Court dismisses Rebel Jacobite plea for ownership

Kochi, 20 September 2011: A petition by the Rebel Jacobite Syrian Christian Church (dissident Patriarchal group) seeking status quo of rights at the disputed church in Kolenchery was Tuesday 20th September 2011 denied by the Kerala High Court.

A Division Bench comprising Justice Thottathil B Radhakrishnan and Justice C T Ravikumar denied to stay implementation of the earlier court order which was in favour of the Orthodox Syrian Church.

A tense situation has been prevailing in Kolenchery between the Rebel Jacobite Syrian Christian Church and Orthodox Syrian Church fighting for the ownership of St Peters' and St Paul's church.

The new petition was filed after two rounds of negotiation to get the two feuding factions compromise failed.

During the court hearing, the government pleaded that both the parties have to maintain law and order and the orders issued by the court should ensure that.

The court held that maintenance of law and order is a matter of the executive and only in exceptional circumstances it becomes necessary for judicial compulsion to ensure it.

Earlier, negotiations by the district administration and court-appointed mediators failed to bring a resolution in the matter with the Orthodox church pushing for an early implementation of the court order.

Trouble erupted last week after a recent court order handed over complete control of the church to the Orthodox church.

An interim order declared by the Church Court in December 2007 had declared that Sunday masses at the disputed church should be conducted in a ratio of 2:1 favoring the Orthodox church.

Courtasy: Babu Thomas, In.christian today.com

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