A free-for-all broke out at the Church of South India (CSI) central church in Vellore on Sunday (22 July) during discussions for the election of its administrative council in September. Tamil daily Dinamalar reported that a consultative meeting was called by the church on 22 July morning when two rival groups clashed in the premises of the church.
The dispute between the two groups broke out on approving the accounts for the 2017-18 year.
Soon, it became a free-for-all, forcing devotees who had come for Sunday prayers to panic. Police were called in and about two dozen persons from both groups were taken to the Vellore north police station for enquiry. A subsequent search on the church’s premises by the police resulted in the recovery of a pistol and two sickles. The church was shut following the incident and security has been tightened in the area.
The Vellore diocese of CSI had earlier courted controversy in 2015 when its members protested against amendments to the Church’s constitution and by-laws. The protesting members demanded democratisation of CSI, its administration and prevention of measures to stop misuse of powers.
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