Church land sale: Another petition against cardinal in Kerala HC

Another petition has been filed in the Kerala High Court, seeking registration of a criminal case against the head of Syro-Malabar Church, Cardinal George Alencherry, over alleged irregularities in land deals involving the church, causing huge loss to his archdioceses.

When the petition came up before Justice Kemal Pasha, he directed the state government to inform the court of its views on the same.

The matter would be heard on February 22.

Alencherry, Major Archbishop of the Syro Malabar Church, claimed that the land belonged to the dioceses and a third party cannot complain against loss in the sale of private property. The Cardinal cannot be charged with breach of trust, his counsel submitted.

Petitioner Shine Varghese said the property belonged to a trust.

This is the second petition against the Cardinal which has come up before the court.

The court had last week issued notice to the Cardinal and three others on a petition seeking a police probe into alleged irregularities in the land deals involving the Ernakulam-Angamaly archdiocese.

The Syro-Malabar Church has over 30 dioceses in the country and four outside– in the U.S, Canada, Australia and Britain–serving over 5 million faithful.