சர்ச் ஆப் சவுத் இந்தியா டிரஸ்ட் அசோசியேஷன் – ஒரு கம்பெனி – குட்டு வெளிப்பட்டுவிட்டது!

சர்ச் ஆப் சவுத் இந்தியா டிரஸ்ட் அசோசியேஷன் – ஒரு கம்பெனி – குட்டு வெளிப்பட்டுவிட்டது!

1947லிருந்து சர்ச் ஆப் சவுத் இந்தியா டிரஸ்ட் அசோசியேஷன்ஒரு பதிவு செய்யப்பட்டுள்ள கம்பெனியாகும்: இன்று முட்டாள்களின் தினம் என்று எண்ணவேண்டாம். இந்தியா கிழக்கிந்திய கம்பெனியின் கீழிருந்து விடுபட்டாலும், தன் கட்டுப்பாட்டில் வைத்துக் கொள்ள வேண்டும் என்று நினைத்தது போலும். சர்ச் ஆப் சவுத் இந்தியா டிரஸ்ட் அசோசியேஷன் [the Church of South India Trust Association (CSI-TA)] 1947லேயே, இந்திய கம்பெனி சட்டத்தின் கீழ் பதிவு செய்யப்பட்டுள்ள ஒரு கம்பெனியாம். இத்தனை ஆண்டுகள் கழித்து, சென்னை உயர்நீதி மன்றம் இந்த உண்மையினை கண்டுபிடித்துச் சொல்லியுள்ளது[1]. இந்திய கம்பெனி சட்டம், 1956ன் கீழ் மாத-வருட அறிக்கைகளை சமர்ப்பிக்காமலேயே ஏமாற்றி வந்துள்ளதும் தெரியவந்துள்ளது.

தென்னிந்திய திருச்சபை ஒரு நிறுவனம்: சென்னை உயர்நீதிமன்றம் தீர்ப்பு[2]: சென்னை, மார்ச்.29: தென்னிந்திய திருச்சபை (சர்ச் ஆஃப் சவுத் இந்தியா) ஒரு நிறுவனம் / கம்பெனி என சென்னை உயர்நீதிமன்றம் தீர்ப்பளித்துள்ளது[3]. எனவே நிறுவன விவகார சட்டத்தின்படி அதன் கணக்குகளை நிறுவனங்களின் பதிவாளருக்கு ஆய்வுக்காக ஒப்படைக்க வேண்டும் என உயர்நீதிமன்றத் தீர்ப்பில் தெரிவிக்கப்பட்டுள்ளது. 1947-48ல் நிறுவனச் சட்டத்தின்கீழ் சிஎஸ்ஐயே தன்னை ஒரு நிறுவனமாக பதிவுசெய்துள்ளது. அதற்கு அயல்நாடுகளிலிருந்து ஏராளமான பணம் வருகிறது, ஆனால், அது அப்பணத்தை துர்பிரயோகம் செய்கிறது என்று ரிஜிஸ்டிரர் ஆப் கம்பெனிக்கு புகார் கொடுத்திருந்தார்[4].  முன்னதாக சிஎஸ்ஐ உறுப்பினரான ஜான் எஸ். துரை என்பவர் தாக்கல் செய்த மனுவின் அடிப்படையில் உயர்நீதிமன்ற நீதிபதி எஸ்.ராஜேஸ்வரன் இந்த உத்தரவை சமீபத்தில் பிறப்பித்துள்ளார்.

 சிஎஸ்ஐ உறுப்பினரான ஜான் எஸ். துரை என்பவர் தாக்கல் செய்த மனுவின் முடிவு: அந்நியச் செலாவணி பரிவர்த்தனையின்கீழ் வரும் நிதிகளை சிஎஸ்ஐ தவறாக பயன்படுத்துகிறது. எனவே அதன் கணக்குகளை ஆராய உத்தரவிட வேண்டும் என்று ஜான் எஸ். துரை தனது மனுவில் குறிப்பிட்டிருந்தார். துரையின் மனுவைத் தொடர்ந்து நிறுவனங்களின் பதிவாளரை இந்த விவகாரத்தை கவனிக்குமாறு பிப்ரவரி 2, 2011ல் உயர்நீதிமன்றம் உத்தரவிட்டிருந்தது. பின்னர் நடத்தப்பட்ட ஆரம்பகட்ட விசாரணையில் மனுதாரர் கூறிய குற்றச்சாட்டுகள் உண்மை என உறுதிப்படுத்தப்பட்டது.

மத்திய அமைச்சகத்திடமிருந்து நிறுவனங்களின் பதிவாளர் அனுமதி பெற்றது: ஏற்கெனெவே பல ஊழல்களில், குற்றச்சாட்டுகளில், சட்டமீறல்களில் கத்தோலிக்கப் பாதிரிகள் சம்பந்தப்பட்டிருப்பது தெரிந்த விஷயமே. ஆனால், கம்பெனியாக இருந்தாலும், ரிஜிஸ்டிரர் ஆப் கம்பெனியே விசாரிக்க வேண்டுமானால், அனுமதி வேண்டுமாம். இதையடுத்து சிஎஸ்ஐயின் நிதி விவகாரங்களை விரிவாக விசாரிக்க மத்திய அமைச்சகத்திடமிருந்து நிறுவனங்களின் பதிவாளர் பிரிவு 209Aன் (Section 209A of Company’s Act) கீழ் விசாரிக்க அனுமதி பெற்றார். ஆகஸ்ட் 30, 2011ல் சிஎஸ்ஐ அறக்கட்டளை அமைப்புக்கு எச்சரிக்கை நோட்டீஸ் அனுப்பப்பட்டது. அந்த நோட்டீஸில் சிஎஸ்ஐயின் கணக்கு புத்தகங்களை தயாராக வைத்திருக்குமாறு கூறப்பட்டிருந்தது. எனினும் சிஎஸ்ஐ நிர்வாகிகள் கணக்குகளை ஆய்வுசெய்ய ஒரு வாரம் அனுமதி கேட்டிருந்தனர். இதனிடையே நோட்டீஸுக்கு எதிராக சிஎஸ்ஐ சென்னை உயர்நீதிமன்றத்தை அணுகி, தங்களது கணக்குகளை ஆய்வுசெய்ய பதிவாளருக்கு உள்ள அதிகாரம் குறித்து செப்டம்பர் 16, 2011ல் கேள்வி எழுப்பி, தடையுத்தரவையும் பெற்றனர்.

 மறுபடியும் வழக்குத் தொடர்ந்த துரை: அப்பொழுது துரை தனது எதிர்-சுய-நில-விளக்கத்தை அளித்து, சி.எஸ்.ஐ எப்பொழுதுமே கணக்கு-வழக்குகளை தாமதமாக சமர்ப்பித்து வருகிறது, ஒழுங்காக வைத்துக் கொள்ளவில்லை என்று எடுத்துக் காட்டி, அவ்வழக்கில் தம்மையும் சேர்ந்த்துக் கொள்ளுமாறு கூறியிருந்தார்[5]. அதனை ஏற்ற சென்னை உயர்நீதிமன்றம் இந்த வழக்கில்தான் சிஎஸ்ஐ ஒரு நிறுவனம்தான் என்றும் அதன் கணக்குகளை நிறுவனங்களின் பதிவாளரிடம் ஒப்படைக்க வேண்டும் என்றும் தீர்ப்பளித்துள்ளது. ஆனால், கத்தோலிக்க இணையதளம் ஒன்று இச்செய்தியை திரித்து வெளியிட்டிருந்தது[6].

வேதபிரகாஷ்

01-04-2012


[4] The case started with a complaint lodged with the RoC by a CSI member, John S Durai of Mylapore. He had claimed that the CSI was misusing the foreign exchange account, which witnessed a huge inflow of money.

[5] In his counter-affidavit, Durai informed the court that CSI was a “habitual defaulter in filing the statutory returns in time, and also not in the habit of replying to the genuine queries raised by the registrar regarding complaints received against the CSI”. He also said the court order was the basis for the present inspection.

குறிச்சொற்கள்: , , , , , , , , ,

9 பதில்கள் to “சர்ச் ஆப் சவுத் இந்தியா டிரஸ்ட் அசோசியேஷன் – ஒரு கம்பெனி – குட்டு வெளிப்பட்டுவிட்டது!”

  1. vedaprakash Says:

    Message Of the Month
    Rt. Rev. Dr. V. Devasahayam
    http://www.csimadrasdiocese.org/messageofthemonth.php?9

    Bishop’s Letter – Mission Festival It was September 27,1947 when the Church of South India was born and Madras took the pride of opening the first leaf in the history of CSI.

    Therefore it is imperative that the Diocese of Madras should always take the lead in expanding the kingdom of God through its Mission. Today the Diocese of Madras stands very high in its membership of more than 3.5 lakh people. But the Lord has envisioned the Diocese to launch out its Mission of taking the Light of the Gospel of Christ to the uttermost parts of this Diocese through the work of more than a hundred Missionaries specially trained for the task of Evangelism.

    The theme for the Mission Festival is very appropriate for the task of the Mission of the Church ‘Step by Step in His Steps.’ The whole Diocese, both the Clergy and the Laity have been envisioned of the need to walk in the footsteps of the Greatest Evangelist the world has ever seen, who is Christ our Lord. Therefore the Church is motivated to follow the methods of Evangelism taught by the Lord to meet the people in their own place and to share the love of Christ and His saving power, thus bringing them into the Body of Christ through baptism.

    The Mission Festival helps bring the people of God in villages, towns and the city of our Diocese come into closer bonds and make the Diocese as a great movement bringing life to the Church at large.

    It is my prayer that the Lord may crown the efforts of the Director and the Missionaries fulfill the Vision and the Mission of the Diocese in the days to come. Maranatha!

    • vedaprakash Says:

      CSI ordered to open its books: The Church of England Newspaper, March 30, 2012 p 7. March 29, 2012
      Posted by geoconger in Church of England Newspaper, Church of South India, Corruption.
      http://geoconger.wordpress.com/category/anglican-church-news/church-of-south-india/

      Anti-corruption activists scored a significant legal victory in India after the Madras high court ruled the trust that holds the assets of the Church of South India (CSI) was a corporation under the Companies Act and must submit is financial accounts for inspection.

      In a ruling dated 1 March 2012 but released on 22 March, Justice S. Rajeswaran held the Church of South India Trust Association (CSITA) must turn over its records to the government’s Registrar of Companies (RoC) for inspection. A spokesman for the CCC (Christ Centered Campaign) applauded the decision saying the anti-corruption coalition believed that in light of the church’s stonewalling of past government queries into the misuse of funds, “there is little doubt the RoC will now conduct an aggressive inspection of the CSITA which will result in a lot of skeletons tumbling out of its cupboard.”

      Long plagued by financial scandals only “8 or 9” of the CSI’s 21 current bishops are untainted by corruption charges, the CCC has reported. Lay leaders have pushed for greater transparency from the bishops and executive committee of the general synod, but complain of being stymied by the church.

      On 1 Feb 2010, Dr. John Dorai, the general secretary of the CSITA Beneficiaries Association – a lay advocacy group in the church – filed a complaint requesting the RoC examine the accounts of the CSITA. The CSITA, through the its secretary, M.M. Philip – who also serves as General Secretary of the CSI – responded by saying Dr. Dorai had no standing to press his case.

      “The complainant Mr John S. Dorai is not a member of the CSITA and is a stranger and as such any representation by a stranger is void,” Mr. Philip told the RoC and stated the complaint should be “brushed aside and needs to be disposed off without any merit.” However, on 1 Aug 2011, the RoC upheld Dr. Doria’s request for an inspection and ordered the CSITA to open its books to government inspectors on 12 Sept 2011.

      The CSI asked for a week’s delay, and then filed a motion with the Madras High Court and received an injunction forbidding the RoC to investigate the church’s trust holdings.

      In his ruling lifting the stay, Justice Rajeswaran held the CSITA was subject to the rules of the Companies Act. The arguments offered by counsel for CSITA were “of no merits,” the court held, adding that it was the “duty of the directors and other officers or the employees of the company to provide all the assistance for such inspection of the records.”

      The judge agreed with the RoC that the CSITA “is a habitual defaulter in filing the statutory returns in time and also not in the habit of replying to the genuine queries raised by the first respondent regarding the complaints received against the company.”

  2. vedaprakash Says:

    History
    http://www.csimadrasdiocese.org/history.php

    The year 1640 marks the beginning of what is now the Diocese of Madras in the Church of South India, being the year of the founding of the city of Madras, and it was only in 1647 that a Chaplain of merchant fleet of the East India Company came ashore to celebrate Holy Communion in a temporary chapel in the Fort St. George. With the consecration of the oldest Anglican Church on the east of the Suez Canal in 1680 in the precincts of the Fort, dedicated to St. Mary the Blessed virgin, under the jurisdiction of the Bishop of London, came established presence of the non-Roman Catholic Church in Madras.

    The next 150 years saw the growth of the Christian population in Madras, It became obvious that the St. Mary’s Church in the Fort cannot serve the growing and spread-out Christian population. So in 1815 the Church of St. George was built on the arterial road linking St. Thomas Mount and Fort St. George. On October 28, 1835 Daniel Corrie, the Archdeacon of Calcutta, was consecrated Bishop and installed in the Church of St. George, it marked both the coming into being of the Diocese of Madras and the elevation of the parish Church on the Choultry Plain to the dignity of a Cathedral.
    The Character of this Diocese was slowly forged over the next 160 years by rule and example of successive Bishopes.

    Daniel Corrie who was 58 when he became Bishop, he resisted the Governmental policy of encouraging and even participating in “heathen festivals”.

    Bishop George Spencer took charge of this Diocese from 1838. He an Anglican Bishop, ordained several Methodist and Congregationist missionaries.

    Bishop Thomas Deltry’s episcopate was from 1849-1861. He consecrated no fewer than 21 new churches.

    Bishop Fredrick Gell (1861-1899) was first and foremost a pastor. He who has commanded the love and respect of most men who are not Christian.

    Bishop Whitehead succeeded the See in 1899 and ministered until 1922. Whitehead was involved in the eventual formation of the CSI.

    Bishop Harry Waller who has already been Bishop of Tinnevelly for seven years took charge of this Diocese in 1922. His great contribution was the enormous upgrading of educational institutions throughout the Diocese.

    Bishop Michael Hollis in 1941 was the first to be elected to office by the Madras Diocesan Council. The man’s greatness is encapsulated in a single sentence in his first sermon as the Bishop of Madras.

    Bishop David Chellappa was the first Indian Bishop of the Diocese.

    Bishop Lesslie Newbigin, who had been consecrated Bishop on the Inaugural Day, had already held the charge of the Diocese of Madurai- Ramnad for twelve years before going to Geneva in 1959 as the Gen. Secretary of the International Missionary Council. He came to Madras on being elected Bishop in 1965.
    Bishop Sunder Clarke’s assumption of charge in 1974 returned the Diocese once more to Indian leadership.

    Bishop Masilamani Azariah, was consecrated and installed on January 2,1990. It could be justifiably claimed that the individual objectives of his ten illustrious predecessor have found full and harmonized expression in his emphases. Totaly convinced as he is in the philosophy of Self- Realisation, Self- Respect and Self- Reliance. Bishop Azariah has led the Diocese in the quest for, and in the discovery of, “a new spiritually appropriate for the twentifirst Century”.

    • vedaprakash Says:

      Devasahayam to continue as caretaker bishop

      SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, The Hindu, CHENNAI, September 21, 2009

      http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Chennai/article23222.ece

      The Madras High Court has permitted Rt. Rev. V. Devasahayam to continue as caretaker Bishop of the Madras Diocese till a new appointment is made by the competent authority.

      Allowing appeals by the executive committee of the Synod, Church of South India (CSI), represented by its General Secretary, Rev. Moses Jayakumar, and the Moderator, CSI, the Most Rev. J. W. Gladstone, against a single Judge’s order, a Division Bench comprising of Justices M. Chockalingam and R. Subbiah held that the Synod was the supreme governing and legislative body of the CSI. They were the final authority in all matters pertaining to the church.

      Though Rt. Rev. Dr. Devasahayam had not made out a prima facie case to continue as Bishop, in view of the vacancy that was created, the Bishop has got to be permitted to continue to be the caretaker Bishop till the new appointment, the Bench said.

      The Laity Association of CSI, Madras Diocese, had earlier filed a suit seeking to declare that Dr. Devasahayam could not hold the post of Bishop beyond May 1 this year. An interim injunction to restrain him from holding the post beyond that date was filed.

      The Moderator issued a communication in April stating that the term of office of the Bishop would end on May 1 and that he might continue as a caretaker Bishop from May 2 till such time the Synod’s executive committee took a decision as per an interim order by the court.

      Meanwhile, Dr. Devasahayam filed the instant suit seeking a declaration that he was entitled to continue as Bishop till he completed the age of 65. He also said the Moderator’s letter was contrary to the CSI constitution. He sought a permanent injunction restraining the defendants from interfering with his functioning as Bishop. A single Judge allowed the Bishop’s applications. Hence, the present appeals.

      The Bench said in April 1999, the Synod Secretariat, CSI, had given the instrument of election and appointment of Dr. Devasahayam for the Madras Diocese. The election and appointment referred to in that document would refer to the earlier appointment of 10 years originally accepted by the Bishop and confirmed by the Synod. Having accepted the appointment for 10 years, now Dr. Devasahayam could not be permitted to say that he would continue till 65 years of age. The Bench said by way of an interim arrangement, the Moderator had permitted the Bishop to continue as a caretaker Bishop

  3. vedaprakash Says:

    Indian bishop wins court case: CEN 6.26.09 p 6. June 30, 2009

    Church of England Newspaper, Church of South India.

    An Indian appeals court has overruled the Moderator of the Church of South India (CSI), and ordered the church to permit the Bishop of Madras, Dr. V. Devasagayam, to serve until he reaches the retirement age of 65.

    On June 19 the court dismissed a lawsuit brought by lay members of the diocese seeking the early retirement of the bishop. In May the Madras Supreme Court asked the Standing Committee of the CSI to advise it on the pertinent canon law governing the tenure of bishops.

    In a response filed on June 8, the Moderator of the CSI, Dr. John Gladstone said the church supported the lay petition and had dismissed the bishop. However, in his opinion, Justice K. Chandru said Bishop Devasagayam was entitled to serve as bishop until he reached the age of 65.

    The court held that the CSI was a voluntary association under Indian law and was governed by its by-laws, or canons. Actions taken outside the parameters of the canons were ultra vires, or without legal foundation. No group or individual within the CSI could curtail, annul, amend or modify the canons, except in accordance with the terms of canon law.

    The CSI’s decision to remove the bishop as a “manifest illegality”, the court held, as the diocese was bound to act “strictly as per the rules.”

    The church was free to seek to remove the bishop for cause, under the procedures set down by canon law the judge said, but could not construe the plain language of a retirement age of 65 against its natural meaning to serve a short political goal.

  4. vedaprakash Says:

    Madras bishop in customs fraud: The Church of England Newspaper, July 9, 2010 p 6. July 17, 2010
    Posted by geoconger in Church of England Newspaper, Church of South India, Corruption.
    http://geoconger.wordpress.com/2010/07/17/madras-bishop-in-customs-fraud-the-church-of-england-newspaper-july-9-2010-p-6/
    Bishop V Devasahayam

    First published in The Church of England Newspaper.

    Indian Customs and Excise has fined the Bishop in Madras £7000 for his part in a scheme to defraud the government of import duties.

    The Deccan Chronicle reported the government launched an investigation into Bishop Vedanayagam Devasahayam after receiving a tip that medical equipment donated to the CSI Hospital in Nagari in Andhra Pradesh had been undervalued. The diocese had presented a false manifest to the Department of Revenue that led to an underpayment of import duties.

    “The department of revenue intelligence (DRI) received a complaint on the malpractice in the deal some years back. In 2003, DRI forwarded the complaint to [Madras] customs commissioner who ordered a departmental enquiry. Upon investigation it was proved that the consignment was brought here and presented at an undervalued rate,” a government official told the Chronicle.

    The diocese was ordered to pay a fine and back duty of almost £675,000 while Bishop Devasahayam was ordered to pay a personal fine of £7000 for his role in the affair. Supporters of the bishop report the fines have been paid, and have accused the bishop’s critics of racism, saying their attacks are motivated by the bishop’s status as a Dalit, or untouchable.

    Bishop Devasahayam is also embroiled in a lawsuit before the Indian Supreme Court over his continued status Bishop in Madras.

    When appointed Bishop in Madras at age 50, Bishop Devasahayam agreed to remain in office for ten years. When he reached the age of 60, the bishop declined to retire citing church rules that set the age of retirement at 65. Lay members of the diocese brought suit against the bishop, backed by the Executive Committee of the CSI’s General Synod, that sought a court order forcing the bishop to retire.

    Last year the trial court ruled in favour of the bishop, which held the CSI was a voluntary association under Indian law and was governed by its by-laws. No one could curtail, annul, amend or modify the canons, except in accordance with the terms of canon law, the lower court held, ruling the ten year term rule imposed upon the bishop was a “manifest illegality.”

    However the Madras High Court on Sept 18 overturned the lower court decision, saying in 1999 the CSI Synod “made the appointment for only 10 years, and this was also approved subsequently and informed to Bishop Devasahayam. He also gave his consent in writing.”

    “Having accepted the appointment for a period of 10 years, now he cannot be permitted to say that he would continue till 65 years of age,” the High Court held, affirming the dismissal of the bishop.

    The bishop filed an appeal to the Indian Supreme Court and on Oct 30, 2009 it issued an order stating Bishop Devasahayam “shall continue as caretaker Bishop,” and ordered an “interim stay of any fresh election process,” pending the final disposition of the case.

    As of July 5, 2010 the proceedings remain pending before the Supreme Court

  5. vedaprakash Says:

    Madras High Court
    The Executive Committee Of The … vs Rt.Rev.Dr.V.Devasahayam on 14 September, 2009
    DATED : 14-9-2009
    http://www.indiankanoon.org/doc/20870/

    CORAM

    THE HONOURABLE MR.JUSTICE M.CHOCKALINGAM

    AND

    THE HONOURABLE MR.JUSTICE R.SUBBIAH

    OSA Nos.293 and 296 of 2009

    and

    MP No.1 of 2009 in OSA 293 of 2009

    and

    MP Nos.1 and 2 of 2009 in OSA 296 of 2009

    1.The Executive Committee of the Synod

    Church of South India

    rep. By its General Secretary

    Rev. Moses Jayakumar

    No.5, Whites Road

    Royapettah

    Chennai 600 014.

    2.The Most Rev. Dr.J.W.Gladstone

    Moderator

    Church of South India

    No.5, Whites Road

    Royapettah

    Chennai 600 014. .. Appellants in

    both appeals

    vs

    1.Rt.Rev.Dr.V.Devasahayam

    Bishop in Madras

    Church of South India –

    Madras Diocese

    No.226, Cathedral Road

    Chennai 600 086.

    2.Madras Diocesan Council

    Church of South India

    rep. By its Secretary

    Rev.Sampath Baghavandas

    No.226, Cathedral Road

    Chennai 600 086. .. Respondents in

    both appeals

    Original Side Appeals preferred under Clause 15 of Letters Patent read with Order XXXVI, Rule 9 of Original Side Rules against the order of this Court made in O.A.No.492 of 2009 and Application No.2171 of 2009 in C.S.No.423 of 2009 dated 22.6.2009.

    For Appellants : Mr.V.Prakash

    Senior Counsel

    for Mr.Adrian D.Rozario

    For Respondents : Mr.R.Thiagarajan

    Senior Counsel

    for Mr.V.Sanjeevi for R1

    COMMON JUDGMENT

    (Judgment of the Court was delivered by M.CHOCKALINGAM, J.)

    These appeals challenge a common order of the learned Single Judge of this Court made in O.A.No.492 of 2009, an application for interim injunction restraining the defendants from interfering with the plaintiff’s holding the office and discharging the functions of the Bishop in Madras, Madras Diocese, and in Application No.2171/2009, an application for stay of the operation of the letter dated 30.4.2009 of the Moderator to the plaintiff.

    2.The Court heard the learned Senior Counsel on either side.

    3.These appeals have arisen under the following circumstances:

    (a) One Laity Association of Church of South India (CSI)  Madras Diocese, represented by its General Secretary and Vice President, filed a suit in C.S.No.295 of 2009 for declaration that the fifth defendant therein Rt.Rev.Dr.V.Devasagayam, cannot hold the post of Bishop of CSI, Madras Diocese, beyond 1.5.2009 and also for consequential reliefs along with the mandatory injunction to direct the defendants 2 and 3 therein to issue a direction to the fourth defendant in respect of the nomination of Bishopric candidates to the post of Bishop. In that suit, the plaintiff filed an application in O.A.No.329 of 2009 seeking interim injunction to restrain the fifth defendant referred to above, from holding the post of Bishop beyond 1.5.2009 and also an application in A.No.1561/2009 seeking for a direction to the respondents 1 and 2 to commence election process. In that suit, pursuant to the orders of Court, summons were served upon the defendants. The Court recorded the statements of the defendants 1 and 2 therein that Synod would decide the issue relating to the continuance of the fifth defendant as Bishop since the Executive Committee of the Synod was seized of the issue. (b) The second defendant in the said suit namely the Moderator of CSI, issued a communication on 30.4.2009 stating that the term of office of the fifth defendant Bishop would come to an end on 1.5.2009, and that he might continue as a caretaker Bishop of CSI Diocese from 2.5.2009 till such time the Executive Committee of Synod takes a decision as per the interim order passed by the Court dated 29.4.2009. (c) While the matter stood thus, the fifth defendant in the above suit namely Rt.Rev.Dr.V.Devasahayam filed the instant suit in C.S.No.423 of 2009 seeking for a declaration that he was entitled to continue to hold the office of Bishop in Madras CSI till he completes the age of 65, and the letter dated 30.4.2009 issued by the Moderator was contrary to the Constitution of CSI and also sought a permanent injunction restraining the defendants from interfering with his functioning as Bishop of Madras CSI. In the said suit, the plaintiff has filed the instant applications for the above said interim reliefs. (d) The learned Single Judge on enquiry, allowed both the applications. Hence these appeals at the instance of the defendants 1 and 2.

    4.Advancing arguments on behalf of the appellants, the learned Senior Counsel Mr.V.Prakash would submit that the appellants are unincorporated bodies, and hence the suit framed is not maintainable under Order I, Rule 8 of C.P.C.; that the restriction of the tenure of the first respondent was not merely in terms of such resolution, but on account of the first respondent expressing his willingness to hold the office of bishop for not more than 10 years; that the said restriction was made on account of health condition of the first respondent; that he was a party to his appointment; that the plaintiff has suppressed the above material facts; that the letter dated 24.4.1999 alleged to have been written by the Moderator to the first respondent herein was ex facie fabricated for the purpose of misleading the Court; that it is pertinent to point out that such an appointment was only after the confirmation by the members of the Executive Committee of Synod; that the same was final and binding on the first respondent; that also the Moderator neither had the power to modify the terms of appointment nor did he do so by virtue of the letter in question; that the first respondent had not sought to take up the matter with the Synod; that the physical fitness and the willingness of the person to accept the office of bishop are two crucial factors to be taken into account for appointment to the said office; that the Synod is clothed with power and discretion to select and appoint a bishop and the post is not merely by election alone; that apart from that, there was no question of retirement in the case of the first respondent; that Synod has power to make rules and pass resolutions and take executive action; that the first respondent had no prima facie case; but the balance of convenience was with the appellants, and irreparable loss and hardship would be caused to them in the event of interim orders being passed against them; that the first respondent had no substantive right to the office after the expiry of the said period; that the first respondent was not entitled to continue till the age of 65 years on account of it being contrary to his appointment for 10 years, and hence the order of the learned Single Judge has got to be set aside.

    5.Contrary to the above, the learned Senior Counsel Mr.R.Thiagarajan for the first respondent in his sincere attempt of sustaining the order of the learned Single Judge put forth his submissions.

    6.The first contention put forth by the appellants’ side that the appellants were not given reasonable opportunity even to file their counter, but the learned Single Judge has made the order hastily cannot be countenanced in view of a memo filed by the appellants’ side before the learned Single Judge that the counter filed in M.P.No.1 of 2009 in OSA No.135 of 2009 could be taken as the counter for this application, and also the Counsel for the appellants before the learned Single Judge had delivered his arguments as could be seen from the impugned order.

    7.It is not in controversy that before the appointment of the plaintiff as bishop of the Madras Diocese CSI, nominations were called for which were published and circulated to all the members of the diocese and the nominations were made by the members of the Diocesan Council. The diocesan council also elected a panel of not less than two and not exceeding four who were actually supported by the majority of the members of the diocesan council present and voting. After the voting that took place, the Moderator has examined the persons in the panel relating to the physical fitness to do the duties of the bishop along with two other Christian Medical persons chosen by him. After doing so, the Moderator must obtain the willingness of the persons so elected to the panel to accept the office of the bishop if appointed. Then the Moderator has communicated to the General Secretary, the names of the persons elected to the panel by the diocesan council. The Joint Secretary has also taken steps to secure by public notice the election of those persons to the panel in all churches of the diocese, calling objections if any. Then the result of the election was submitted to the Board consisting of the Moderator and six members appointed by the Executive Committee of the Synod. Following the same, the Board has appointed the plaintiff from those elected to the panel by the diocesan council. On appointment as found in Clause 32, the Moderator informed the General Secretary the name of the plaintiff as appointed which was informed to all concerned. Following the same, the Executive Committee of the Synod has also confirmed the appointment. The same was also reported to the Moderator. In turn, the Moderator and the General Secretary have executed the certificate of confirmation in the name of the bishop appointed. The consecration of the plaintiff has also taken place. The parties are not in controversy as to the above factual position.

    8.The only question that arose for consideration is whether the appointment of the first respondent/plaintiff bishop as made above was only for a period of 10 years ending with 1.5.2009 and thereafter he cannot continue as contended by the appellants’ side or he could continue till he attains 65 years of age as contended by the plaintiff bishop.

    9.The learned Senior Counsel for the appellants would submit that Rule 12(a) of Chapter V of the Constitution of the Church of South India stipulates that a bishop shall retire on the completion of 65 years of age; that the use of the words "shall retire" was with a specific purpose of prescribing the maximum or outer limit for holding the office and constituted a bar only to continuing beyond such period in cases where there was no restriction operating, and it did not mean "until" and hence the first respondent bishop was appointed only for a period of 10 years considering his health condition, and he cannot take shelter under Clause 12(a). On the contrary, the learned Senior Counsel for the first respondent Bishop would submit that when a Bishop is appointed, the duration of the period would be till the person completes the age of 65. In order to solve the controversy, it would be more apt and appropriate to reproduce Rule 12(a) as follows: "12(a)Duration of Appointment:- The bishop of a diocese shall remain bishop of that diocese until he resign, or accept the charge of another diocese, or depart permanently from the diocese or be deprived of his charge by sentence of the Court of the Synod, or be adjudged by the Executive Committee of the Synod to be mentally, physically or otherwise incapable of discharging the duties of his office. A bishop shall retire on completion of his 65th year of age."

    10.It is true that the above clause would abundantly make it clear that a bishop so appointed will have the term of office till the completion of 65th year of his age. At this juncture, it is to be pointed out that the Synod is the supreme governing and legislative body of the Church of South India. They are the final authority in all the matters pertaining to the church. Clause 13 of Chapter IX of the Constitution speaking to the powers of the synod reads as follows: "13.The Synod is the supreme governing and legislative body of the Church of South India, and the final authority in all matters pertaining to the Church."

    Thus it can be well stated that Synod is clothed with powers in respect of all matters pertaining to the church.

    11.The next contention put forth by the appellants’ side is that the plaintiff bishop having accepted his tenure of office as bishop for a period of 10 years should not be allowed to continue as bishop of Madras diocese for two reasons; that firstly he is estopped from stating that his appointment was till his completion of 65 years while he has accepted an appointment for a period of 10 years; that secondly he has also enjoyed the benefits of appointment for 10 years; and that under the circumstances, now he should not be allowed to question the validity or otherwise of the appointment after enjoying the benefits of the same. Contrarily it is contended by the first respondent bishop that he was appointed till his completion of the age of 65 as contemplated under the Rule and not for a period of 10 years as contended by the appellants. In the instant case, it is not in controversy that the plaintiff was duly appointed as bishop and also consecrated in the office. Nowhere in the entire Constitution it speaks about the restricted period of 10 years or any period. On the contrary it stipulates under Rule 12(a) "till the completion of his 65th year". When the nominations were made or elections conducted, it was also not for a stipulated period; but it should have been only for a period as envisaged under Rule 12(a). In support of the contention, the learned Senior Counsel for the appellants placed reliance on different communications which emerged between the Church of South India and the plaintiff bishop.

    12.The minutes of the meeting of the bishop’s selection board of Madras Diocese met on 5.4.1999 at 4.00 P.M. at CSI Synod Centre reads as follows:

    "After preliminary discussion the candidates of the panel were interviewed.

    After prolonged consideration, considering all aspects relating to the candidates particularly with regard to health condition of both of them it was unanimously decided to restrict the period of appointment, in the interest of the Diocese for a period of 10 years. (emphasis supplied) …

    After careful consideration it was unanimously resolved to appoint the Rev.Dr.V.Devasahayam and recommend to the Moderator to consecrate him as Bishop of the Diocese of Madras."

    13.A letter from the Church of South India dated 11.4.1999 addressed to all the members of the Synod Executive Committee reads as follows:

    "Rev.Devasahayam has expressed his desire, in writing, to hold the office of Bishop for not more than ten years for reasons that he shared with the Board and the Board has decided accordingly…." (emphasis supplied)

    14.On 24.4.1999, a letter was addressed by the Moderator and Bishop to Rev.Samuel Jacob, the Secretary, CSI Madras Diocese, which reads as follows:

    "The Board, after personal interview and careful study of the two candidates elected to the panel by the Madras Diocesan Council and giving due consideration of the needs of the Diocese, has decided to select Rev.Dr.V.Devasahayam for appointment as the Bishop of Madras Diocese for a period of ten years. The Synod Executive Committee also has confirmed the above appointment.

    I, therefore, hereby inform you and the Diocese that Rev. Dr. V.Devasahayam has been duly selected for appointment as the Bishop of the Diocese of Madras for a period of ten years. The order of appointment comes into effect from the date of the Consecration." (emphasis supplied) It is pertinent to point out that a copy of the above letter was addressed to the plaintiff Bishop Devasahayam.

    15.The plaintiff Bishop Devasahayam has also attended the Diocesan Executive Committee meeting on the very day i.e., 24.4.1999, as a special invitee. In the meeting held on 28.8.1999, the minutes of the previous meeting held on 24.4.1999 was read and confirmed by the Executive Committee.

    16.All the above communications would clearly indicate that the Bishop’s Selection Board has taken into consideration all aspects relating to the candidates with regard to their health condition and unanimously decided to restrict the period of appointment and also in the interest of the diocese, for 10 years. Accordingly, it has made the appointment for only 10 years, and this was also approved subsequently and informed to the plaintiff bishop, and he also gave his consent in writing. Thereafter, the Synod has issued a certificate of election and appointment of the plaintiff for the Madras Diocese following which the act of consecration has also taken place as found in the documents.

    17.It is true that in both the documents namely the certificate of election and appointment and also the document for consecration, the period of office of the plaintiff is not mentioned. Equally in the letter dated 9.4.1999 issued by the Church of South India to the members of the Synod Executive Committee along with the bio-data of the plaintiff Devasahayam and also the letter dated 28.4.1999 whereby the members of the Synod Executive Committee have expressed their willingness for the appointment of Devasahayam as the bishop in Madras Diocese, the term of office is not mentioned.

    18.The learned Senior Counsel for the first respondent bishop pointing to all the documents would contend that even at the time of appointment, the period of office was not stated and hence when the plaintiff bishop was appointed, it was only till he attains the age of 65. Insofar as certificate of appointment and also the document of consecration, one cannot expect the period of tenure of office to be stated therein. At this juncture, it is pertinent to point out that the board appointed for the purpose of bishop by the Church of South India has restricted the period of tenure as 10 years taking into consideration the health condition of both the candidates and has informed the same to the present bishop, and he has also consented therefor. Thereupon, he has also been appointed, and his appointment was confirmed in a meeting on 28.8.1999 by the Executive Committee of the Diocesan. Once the appointment was made only for a period of 10 years and the same has also been accepted by the first respondent bishop and subsequently confirmed by the Executive Committee of the Synod, now the first respondent bishop who did not make any murmur earlier, cannot now be allowed to state that his appointment was for a period till 65 years of his age and that too after the period of 10 years is over. (emphasis supplied)

    19.Now the learned Senior Counsel for the first respondent bishop in support of his contentions took the Court to a letter dated 24.4.1999 written by the Moderator to the plaintiff bishop which reads as follows:

    "I acknowledge the receipt of your letter regarding your order of appointment limiting your term of episcopal office for a period of ten years. In consultation with the Synod lawyers, I am to inform you that the retirement of Bishops is governed by the Constitution of the Church of South India, i.e., retirement at the completion of 65 years of age and that the term of office cannot be limited by any order contrary to the provision of the Constitution. Ofcourse the Bishop is free to lay down office at any point of time before retirement on health grounds. I sincerely pray that the God Almighty to give you good health to complete your full term. I Invite you to arrange for the consecration retreat in Chennai with the available senior bishops as I am not free to lead the retreat. Be assured of my prayers as you and your wife prepare yourselves for this high calling."

    20.On the contrary it was contended by the learned Senior Counsel for the appellants that the said letter was a fabricated one in order to suit the convenience of the first respondent bishop. The letter relied on by the first respondent’s side cannot be acted upon for the reason that on the very day i.e., 24.4.1999, the CSI has addressed a communication to its Secretary wherein it has specifically stated that Devasahayam has been duly selected for appointment as bishop for a period of 10 years and it has come into effect from the date of the consecration. This communication is not disputed and it has also emanated from the CSI. While so, there cannot be another letter on the very day namely 24.4.1999 written by the Moderator to the plaintiff bishop that his retirement was at the completion of 65 years of age and his term of office cannot be limited by any order contrary to the provisions of the Constitution. Hence such a letter could not have been written the very day. That apart, the Moderator cannot write such a letter. Even assuming that the Moderator has written such a letter, during that time he could not extend the period stating that the retirement will be at the completion of 65 years of age since it was contrary to the earlier appointment and confirmation by the Synod. At this juncture, it is pertinent to point out that the said letter dated 24.4.1999 relied on by the first respondent/plaintiff bishop, does not refer to any decision of the Synod. It remains to be stated that only the Synod has got the power to rectify or set right things if any defect is noticed and not the Moderator.

    21.It is true that on 28.4.1999, the Synod Secretariat, CSI, has given the instrument of election and appointment of the Rt.Rev.Dr.V.Devasahayam for Madras Diocese. But it remains to be stated that it was an instrument for election and appointment. The election and appointment referred to in that document would refer to the earlier appointment of 10 years originally accepted by the bishop and confirmed by the Synod in its earlier proceedings. Had the contention of the first respondent bishop that his appointment was upto 65 years of his age and not for 10 years been true, the Synod should have clarified and set right the situation but not done so. All the above would clearly indicate that the Selection Board considering the health condition of both the candidates restricted the period as 10 years and out of these two persons, Devasahayam was selected, and he was also informed about the same and also the tenure of his office. The first respondent bishop has accepted the same and subsequently the appointment was made and confirmed by the Synod of CSI. Having accepted the appointment for a period of 10 years, now he cannot be permitted to say that he would continue till 65 years of age taking shelter under Rule 12(a). (emphasis supplied)

    22.The Bench had an occasion to consider the matter in OSA No.135 of 2009 and has made a final order on 9.6.2009. While disposing of the said appeal, the Bench has observed that there would be an order of status quo till 26.5.2009 and it was made further clear that till the appointment is made by the competent authority, the appellant therein who has been continuing as Bishop is entitled to continue and the same order would continue till further orders are passed by the learned Single Judge. Pursuant to the above orders of the Bench, the learned Single Judge has passed the common order which is the subject matter of challenge in this appeal. Even at this stage, no appointment was made by the competent authority namely the Synod. As per Rule 16 of Chapter V of the Constitution, when the post of bishop becomes vacant, the charge and administration would devolve upon the Moderator who should administer with full jurisdiction until a new bishop is appointed. In the case on hand, by way of interim arrangement, the Moderator has permitted the first respondent bishop to continue as a caretaker bishop in the circumstances. Though the first respondent has not made out a prima facie case to continue him as Bishop, in view of the vacancy that is created, the first respondent bishop has got to be permitted to continue to be the caretaker bishop of the Madras Diocese till the new appointment is made by the competent authority.

    23.Above all, the suit is laid against the Executive Committee of the Synod, Church of South India, the first defendant and against the Madras Diocesan Council CSI as the third defendant, and the reliefs are sought against those defendants. It is not in controversy that those defendants are unincorporated bodies and are not legal persons. Thus the suit is filed against the Christian community represented by the defendants who are unincorporated bodies, and hence the suit itself is not maintainable without getting permission under Order 1 Rule 8 of the Code of Civil Procedure. For instituting a suit in a representative capacity or filing a suit against a representative body, the procedure under Order I Rule 8 of CPC has to be complied with. The Apex Court in a case reported in (1990)1 SCC 266 (KALYAN SINGH V. SMT.CHHORI) has held that for a representative suit, the court’s permission under Order 1 Rule 8 of the Code of Civil Procedure is mandatory. Admittedly, in the instant case, no such permission was sought for. So long as no permission was either applied or granted, it cannot be stated that the suit is in order. As such the suit framed is not maintainable.

    24.In the result, both the original side appeals are allowed setting aside the order of the learned Single Judge and leaving the parties to bear their own costs. The first respondent/plaintiff is permitted to continue as caretaker bishop of the Madras Diocese till the new appointment is made by the competent authority, as per the observations made in this judgment. It is made clear that any of the observations made above will not stand in the way of Synod making new appointment. Consequently, connected MPs are closed.

    nsv

  6. vedaprakash Says:

    https://christianityindia.wordpress.com/2010/09/18/%E0%AE%A8%E0%AE%BF%E0%AE%B2-%E0%AE%AE%E0%AF%8B%E0%AE%9A%E0%AE%9F%E0%AE%BF-%E0%AE%9A%E0%AF%8A%E0%AE%A4%E0%AF%8D%E0%AE%A4%E0%AF%81%E0%AE%95%E0%AF%8D-%E0%AE%95%E0%AF%81%E0%AE%B5%E0%AE%BF%E0%AE%AA/

  7. கற்பழிப்பு, சொத்து மோசடி, பணம் கையாடல், மடாலயங்களில் சண்டை போன்றவற்றில் ஈடுப்பட்டுள்ள பிஷப்பு Says:

    […] [6] https://christianityindia.wordpress.com/2012/04/01/church-of-south-india-registered-company-but-flout… […]

மறுமொழியொன்றை இடுங்கள்

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / மாற்று )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / மாற்று )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / மாற்று )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / மாற்று )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: