ON May 22, a case of religious preaching during government duty has come to light in district Ratlam, Madhya Pradesh. As per local reports, a nurse was caught in the tribal-dominated development block of Bajala with publicity leaflets preaching Christianity on the pretext of informing people about dietary plans amidst the Covid-19 pandemic. The residents apprehended the nurse and informed the Police and administration about her actions.
During the preliminary inquiry, the Police found the allegations of spreading religious propaganda to be true. It has to be noted that door-to-door surveys are being conducted in the state of Madhya Pradesh to control the Covid-19 spread. The government has deployed teams of ANM, nurses, anganbari and Asha workers for the campaign.
RSS activists caught the nurse
On Saturday, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) activists learned about one nurse identified as Sandhya Tiwari of the Rapid Response Team in Bajna, who was propagating Christianity distributing leaflets while on government duty. When she was surveying in the region, people objected to the religious propaganda. RSS and other Hindu organizations also reached the spot.
Video of the nurse went viral on social media
A video is making rounds on social media in which the nurse was confronted. In a video shared by BJP leader Somesh Paliwal, one can see that when she was repeatedly asked why she was distributing religious pamphlets with the diet plans, she asked the activist to not make an issue out of the mole.
#कील_कोरोना अभियान के दौरान रतलाम के आदिवासी बाहुल्य बाजना क्षेत्र में एक सरकारी महिला स्वास्थ्यकर्मी द्वारा धर्म विशेष का प्रचार किया जा रहा है। @drnarottammisra जी कृपया इसे संज्ञान में लेवें।@ChouhanShivraj@DrMohanYadav51 @RatlamCollector @VishvasSarang @rajneesh4n https://t.co/xRhmdi83cX pic.twitter.com/6smjgv2oLt— Somesh Paliwal (@SomeshBJP) May 22, 2021
When the activist insisted on explaining, she said she was not telling everyone about Jesus “but to only those who need it” and claimed that she was telling diet plan also, so nothing was wrong in what she was doing alongside. The activist then asked the people around if they want such preaching in their area, to which they denied and raised objections over her actions.
The nurse kept arguing with Police for over an hour
When the Police brought her to the police station and interrogated her, she kept arguing with the Police for about an hour that she had not done anything wrong. Tehsildar Bhagwandas Thakur also reached the police station and inquired about the allegations against the nurse. A report of the incident was sent to Sailana’s Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Kamini Thakur, in which Tehsildar mentioned that the complaint was found to be primarily correct.
SDM Thakur said that she has received the complaint and found it to be true in the preliminary investigation. It has been forwarded to the collector for further action.
Contents of the leaflet
The leaflet, which the nurse was distributing, had information on Christianity TV channel shows, websites and more. It also had information about prayers etc.
The nurse was making false claims that by praying to Jesus, people can save themselves from Covid-19 infection.
IMA chief was also criticized for using pandemic to spread Christianity
Recently, Indian Medical Association’s chief Dr. JA Jayalal faced a lot of criticism for milking pandemic to spread Christianity. He was in favour of using hospitals to convert to Christianity. Dr Jayalal wanted his professional qualifications and recently acquired position as the head of the Indian Medical Association to be used to further Christian evangelism that is carried out by Christian missionaries. He saw the coronavirus outbreak as an opportunity that could be leveraged to convert medical students, patients and fellow doctors into Christianity.