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Updated May 16th, 2022 at 09:39 IST

Tamil Nadu VHP 'vehemently' opposes canonisation of Devasahayam Pillai in Vatican

Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) Dakshin Tamil Nadu said it “vehemently” opposed the decision of the Vatican of conferring the Sainthood to Devasahayam Pillai. 

Reported by: Aanchal Nigam
Tamil Nadu
Image: Twitter | Image:self
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Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) Dakshin Tamil Nadu on Sunday said it “vehemently” opposed the decision of the Vatican of conferring Sainthood to Devasahayam Pillai. On Sunday, Pope Francis declared Devasahayam, who converted to Christianity in the 18th century in the then kingdom of Travancore, a saint at the Vatican. The ceremony was even attended by Tamil Nadu’s Minister for Information Technology & Digital services Mano Thangaraj. 

However, taking to Twitter, VHP said, “VHP has vehemently opposed the decision of the Vatican conferring Sainthood to Devasahayam Pillai” and called the event a 'devious ploy' as it converted Hindus in the garb of honouring/uplifting them.

It is pertinent to note here that Devasahayam Pillai, also known as Lazarus, on Sunday became the first Indian layman to be declared a saint by Pope Francis. The 85-year-old pope canonised Blessed Devasahayam during the Canonisation Mass held in St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican attended by over 50,000 devotees from all over the world as well as government delegations honouring the 10 new saints. Devasahayam was recommended for the process of beautification by the Vatican in 2004, at the request of the Kottar diocese Tamil Nadu Bishops' Council and the Conference of Catholic Bishops of India. Ultimately, the miracle attributed to Devasahayam was recognised by Francis in 2014 which cleared the path to his canonisation this year. 

First canonisation ceremony at the Vatican in 2 years

Moreover, Devasahayam’s canonisation was the first such ceremony at the Vatican in over two years. Pope Francis attended the event in person despite complaining of strained ligaments in his right knee for several months. The cleric used a wheelchair to preside over the ceremony. In his address, the Pope even criticised the range of conflicts afflicting the world presently and urged the leaders to preside over the ceremony. 

It is also pertinent to note here that Tamil Nadu’s State song, the invocation to the Tamil language was sung in an event which was part of the canonisation ceremony of Devasahayam. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin had posted a tweet and picked a verse from the invocation song that signified that Tamil is honoured and acclaimed in all directions. The State government was represented by the Tamil Nadu Minister of Minorities Welfare Gingee KS Masthan at the ceremony. Apart from Masthan and Thangaraj, Chairman of TN Minorities Commission S Peter Alphonse was also part of the official delegation from the southern state.

Image: Twitter

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Published May 16th, 2022 at 09:39 IST

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