DELHI: As we all know the Managing committee Meetings are not what they used to be. As an institution it was the mainstay of the Church, has supported the Malankara Metropolitans in times of crisis and defended the Church against the alien onslaughts. Now this institution has been reduced to a group of people whose interests, it seems, are anything other than that of the Church. The meetings have become very uncontrollable. The members of the Managing Committee think that they are the law-makers and people simp believe them. This makes them to shout at the top of their voice in the meetings as our representatives in Assemblies/ Parliaments do and people to come with placards and bills, as people would do before Assemblies/ Parliaments. I think the people need to be informed about the reality.
(1) This unusual phenomenon is perhaps the after-effect of the verdict of the Supreme Court which has been wrongly interpreted by some of the people. In the context of that Judgment, the Supreme Court wanted the new Managing Committee elected by the Malankara Association with Justice Malimath as the observer to approve the allotment of Dioceses to the Metropolitans. This allotting of the Dioceses was only for that occasion. The usual practice is that the Malankara Metropolitan, the Episcopal Synod and the Managing Committee work in tandem in allotting the Dioceses to Metropolitans. This was a very extra ordinary situation where the Court had asked to convene the Malankara Syrian Christian Association under an observer to elect the Malankara Metropolitan and the members of the Managing Committee. The Court then asked the new Managing Committee to allot the Dioceses to Metropolitans who owed allegiance to the Catholicos. It should be mentioned here that this was another extra ordinary occasion when the Episcopal Synod was practically not functioning. Though, there were Metropolitans, they were to be accepted by the Malankara Metropolitan and the Managing Committee first and the Malankara Metropolitan and the Managing Committee were to then allot their Dioceses. This is another extra ordinary situation when the trio i.e., the Malankara Metropolitan, the Episcopal Synod and the Managing Committee were not in a position to work in tandem. So, it can be said that this was the rarest of rare situations. Once, the allotment of Dioceses was over and the Episcopal Synod has come to officiate as a responsible body, once again the status quanta ought to be maintained, each playing the respective role assigned to them by the Constitution. It cannot be perceived that the Supreme Court will assign this role exclusively to the Managing Committee for all times and for all purposes. As mentioned above, it goes without saying that the Supreme Court gave that specific direction in that particular context.
(2) The Supreme Court has approved the 1934 Constitution except for an amendment to clauses 46 and 71(dealing with the Parish Churches and Parish Assembles) which have absolutely no mention about the powers of the Managing Committee, either by way of widening or diminishing its powers. Hence, the rest of the provisions of the Constitution remain intact which implies that the Managing Committee is not vested with more powers than what is envisaged by the Constitution.
(3) It needs to be reiterated that the ultimate authority is the Malankara Metropolitan and all decisions pertaining to both temporal as well as spiritual matters vest with him in accordance with clause 94 of the Constitution. The Managing Committee in itself is not competent to take decisions independently.