Catholic Church shocked at the murder of a 65 year old priest
Catholic Bishops Conference of India
New Delhi – The Catholic Church in India is shocked at the murder of Fr. Mathew Nellickal, Vicar General of Tezpur who was brutally murdered on Friday night, September 2, 2005. The body of 65-year-old priest with the totally disfigured face, was found on Saturday morning at 10. a.m. in a store room adjacent to his bedroom.
The Catholic Bishops Conference of India (CBCI), the apex body of the Catholic Church in India expresses its distress at the killing of a 65 year old Catholic priest who served in Tezpur in North East India for the last 30 years. The Conference of Bishops condemns the dastardly murder of Fr. Nellickal and asks the Assam State Government to urgently probe the priest’s killing.
The Secretary General of CBCI, Bishop Percival Fernandez says ” it is sad and regretful that Church leaders are attacked in northeast despite the sterling development work they are doing in the area. The killing of Fr Nellickal is another instance of increasing attacks on Christian religious personnel across India , and the authorities must punish the guilty”.
Fr. Nellickal was found in a pool of blood by his colleagues when he did not show up for breakfast on Saturday morning. He had fallen on his face in the inner store-room adjacent to his bedroom. Doctor Ameng Tham, the house doctor was requested for immediate assistance. On preliminary examination he found deep gashes on the temple and other areas of the face . The police also came to the scene and they conducted an enquiry; the body was removed for Postmortem examination.
Fr Nellickal was born on 8 January 1940 at Palai, Kottayam in Kerala. He was an active, sincere and enthusiastic Priest of the Diocese, full of cheer and good will, a friend of everyone. He was very efficient in his work and carried out his duties with utmost care and sincerity, always concerned about the welfare of those who worked with him. He used his talents of mind and heart for his apostolate. He was entrusted with various responsibilities: Parish Priest, Headmaster, Rector of Muktidata Seminary etc. He was also for many years a Consultor, Notary and Chancellor of the Diocese, and then the Vicar General at the time of his untimely death.