28th May 2011
The President, Office-bearers and Council Members,
Catholic Association of South Kanara (CASK),
Mangalore – 575 001.
There has been a lot of controversy in the recent past with regard to happenings within the Catholic community and the contention repeatedly raised is that the attacks and criticisms from outsiders is unjustified, without looking at the atrocities committed by our own people. I am listing just two of the heads that have disgraced the Catholic community not locally but Nationally and Globally, and for me, as a Member of CASK, the time has come to take stock. If this is the track record, the Association should be wound up immediately instead of its destroying the community. As it is the Association does not represent the entire community and it is conspicuously absent in times of crises.
The first of these concerns a series of criminal acts of Gangsterism / Terrorism that were committed at the time of the elections which are under close scrutiny of the GOI. A criminal conspiracy was hatched to illegally subvert the institution, the Law was given a go-bye and with the assistance of the underworld, the present group has taken charge of the institution. To start with, the then President was repeatedly threatened by the hired mafia with dire consequences prior to the AGM. I am a personal witness to this as also to the incidents on 19th September 2010.
This has never happened in the history of CASK.Apart from these threats, on the date of incident, I had decided to observe as to what exactly would be done as the security and safety of the President were of deep concern to me, and I therefore, went to the venue of the AGM a little early. I have lived in Mangalore all my life, I am an old Member of CASK and I was not surprised to find that at-least 20 of the members were not allowed entry to the AGM by D.V. Pais, Derek Lobo and a group of goondas who were stationed on the stair-case. Some of the Members tried to argue but were told that the place is overcrowded and that there is no room. Among those who were brought into the hall, were at least 30 persons who are non-members. Please do not try to argue that signatures were obtained in the Register because I will establish that these are forgeries when this case is heard in Court and the persons responsible are put behind bars, irrespective of whether they are Doctors or Lawyers.
I am personally witness to the fact that six persons were ferried to the venue, two each in the cars of Derek Lobo, D.V. Pais and John Prasad Menezes. Two of these men were located near the door of the hall, two on the stair-case and two outside. I had questioned these persons who tried to tell me that the first two were helpers with the refreshments, whereas the other four were supposed to help with maintaining order since a large crowd was expected. As a preventive, I brought this to the notice of the President who spoke to the D.G. Police – Mr. Ajay Kumar Singh. Within a few minutes, the Police jeep arrived but the mistake committed was that they had used the siren. This alerted the six persons who immediately ran down and jumped into a red coloured Mahindra XYLO SUV which was parked near the gate as a get-away car. My investigation reveals that this car belonged to Mr. C. Pais, the father of Mr. D.V. Pais. The police jeep tried to follow the car but it appeared to be a little late. What made Mr. C Pais at this old age to befriend criminals is a mystery to me.
The meeting that followed was a total sham and everything done there a complete illegality. If this is the manner in which one of the oldest organizations of the Community is functioning, the brick-bats and condemnation from outside is fully justified. Personally, I am ashamed at this unpardonable state of affairs but I propose to see it through.
The second incident which I desire to record is that shortly after the present group assumed office, a huge victory party was organized at the Mangalore Club. I decided to attend this function which was by contribution. Initially, the entrance was on the basis of coupons but after the first about 100 persons came in, there were large numbers of complete strangers who are apparently friends of the office-bearers and each person paid Rs.200/- in cash and joined the party. I did not have a ticket and I paid a similar amount in cash but was not given any ticket. The place was horribly over-crowded and I did a reasonable estimation of the Members present who were not less than 383 adults, about 90% of whom were men.
There was no sanity in what went on. Alcohol was flowing like water, a small Bar was set-up but the system followed in this party was that the liquor bottles were being sold unopened and that explained the over consumption. What I found strange was that an announcement was made that if the cases of liquor were bought, that it was available at less than the market rate and this provoked a mad rush with boxes of liquor being
bought and carried to the cars as though this was a discount sale. The Law does not permit the illegal sale of liquor in places other than the licensed permit shops and how this was done at the Mangalore Club will require investigation. My reasonable estimation is that a couple of 100 cases of hard liquor were sold on that evening, the majority of it taken away but a large quantity consumed on the premises, as a result of which, most of those present were reeling drunk. We take offence when Catholics are accused of smuggling of liquor and boot-legging- what else was this?
The President, in the middle of this drunken session tried to make a speech. This man not only volunteers but insists on speaking at weddings, funerals, anniversaries, birthday parties, private get-togethers in a desperate effort to establish himself in Mangalore Society and the content of what he spoke on that evening (somebody should tell him how poor a speaker he is, reading out scripts written by his wife who passes for a great intellectual)) was bordering on the absurd. His wife was the Major Domo and put up one of her sub-standard entertainments (which are regular features at every function) in which the President and the Secretary who both think that they are great actors, figured prominently. The good thing was that the drunken audience kept clapping. Has the Mangalorean Catholic Community come down to these depths?
The reason why I am referring to this incident is because we complain when the Christians are portrayed as “Bottle Masters”. What happened at this function unfortunately justifies that definition. I was not surprised to find the women drinking more than the men and one of the Lady Vice-Presidents was leading the performance. My principal objection to these type of spectacles is because they are degrading to the Catholic community. Our community had a very serious problem of alcoholism during which time, all the leading families lost their properties and businesses and the then Bishop went from house to house administering the “total abstinence pledge”. Through this one evening, CASK has promoted total alcoholism which is something intolerable. It is not only alcoholism but total indulgence in public violation of laws and regulations and illigal trading in alchohol sale.
These and several other areas are under investigation and I shall revert to them in course of time. I demand that CASK should put a full-stop to such performances which are destroying the image, reputation and future of the community.