Q: How do you see the appointment of Alphons Kannanthanam as Union minister? Do you think it is a political move? Do you see Alphons as a representative of Christians in the Cabinet? Have you gone to the public reception given to him in Kanjirappally? Why are you giving him a reception?
A: “His administrative ability and ingenuity are the main factors that led Modi to appoint him. Of course there might be some politics in it. Basi-cally Modi has found in him an able administrator who can run the show. Tourism is an area which has to be exploited for the good of the people and the country. It has not been well exploited and it has not brought in the potent-ial revenue that could be expected. People can read different implications behind his appointment. May be BJP wants to attract people using him. Christians are not well represented in the BJP as of now. That also is ano-ther reason why I think he has been inducted. Before he joined BJP, none had thought in that line, because we are a small minority that can provide only a very limit-ed support. Alphons is capable of bringing our people’s needs and pro-blems to the notice of government. I didn’t go for his reception. But we are giving him a reception on September 15th in the Cathedral parish hall. We accord him a recept-ion because, beside being a cabinet minister, he was also earlier the district collector of Kottayam and a MLA from Kanjira-pally. He has done a lot in this area, and so no one can simply disregard him. We accept and receive anyone who does for the community, as an encou-ragement.”
Bp Mathew Arackal