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Catholic priests unhappy over decision to organise Yoga day on June 21

Catholic priests unhappy over decision to organise Yoga day on June 21

Kochi: Catholic Bishops Conference of India, apex body of the Catholic priests in the country, Thursday expressed displeasure over government's decision to organise Yoga day on June 21, saying Sundays are "sacred day" for Christians in the country.

CBCI President and Syro-Malankara Major Archbishop Cardinal Baselios Cleemis, however, said the Church was not against Yoga, which was described as "anti-Islam" by certain Muslim bodies including All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB).

Lamenting that "important events are being observed on Sundays these days", the Cardinal said the Church will raise its concern before the authorities concerned.

"We are not against Yoga. But it is sad that such important events are being observed on Sundays these days. Sundays are holy day for Christians. Organising such programmes on Sundays will clash with our belief," Cleemis, also the leader of the Kerala Catholic Bishops Council (KCBC), told reporters here.

The Catholic church's reservations against Yoga came amid opposition from some minority groups, including AIMPLB, against compulsory yoga classes in schools.

Government has said participation in June 21 events to mark International Yoga Day was not "compulsory".

KCBC had rallied behind the Supreme Court judge Justice Kurian Joseph who had opposed the decision of Chief Justice of India H L Dattu to convene a conference of judges on Good Friday in April this year.

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