An article published in Vijnaana Kairali, a monthly publication of the state-run Kerala Bhasha Institute, has become the centre of controversy after commenting on the practice of confession in Catholic Churches.
The article has sparked criticism from the Kerala Catholic Bishops’ Council (KCBC) as well as a response from the National Commission for Minorities (NCM).
The sections of the article that the KCBC took objection to included the lines, “Jesus Christ has said that heaven is in the mind of he who confesses and regrets his action. It is the priesthood that should publicly confess for using the Utopian concept of heaven, which is only an imagination of the human mind, to satisfy their sexual desires. If you don’t consider woman’s body as a sexual object, no woman – whether she is a lover or a nun – should henceforth confess before anyone. Believers hide the fact that a man who confesses is not harassed anywhere. It is not enough to sing that you are not ready to die, but the women community should stand together and shout that they are not ready to confess.” But according to the Bhasha Institute, the article in its entirety discusses the opposition of Kerala’s middle class to so-called regressive traditions, and calls for a revitalization of progressiveness in society.