(Vatican Radio) Sister Antasia Gill, newly elected Christian member in the Delhi Minority Commission, has set her priorities right. “I have to bring out the unheard voices and concerns of the community before the administration,” says the Presentation nun who goes by the name Sister Sneha.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal included teacher-turned-social-worker-turned lawyer when his government reconstituted the minority commission on July 14.
Sister Gill sees the new position as an opportunity to work for the people. “It is also a huge responsibility,” says the nun who hails from Jammu and Kashmir.
Speaking to Ajay Kumar Singh of Matters India in an interview she said, it is a moment of joy for her congregation and for her too, as she deems it an opportunity to work for her community and people who are in troubled waters from all directions. She feels it is also a huge responsibility entrusted to her on behalf of Delhi minority groups, who feel voiceless, helpless and even sidetracked from the main stream of the population in the country.
Her task will be to do advocacy and lobby for the minority communities. She is expected to represent and redress concerns, issues and needs of the community.
The commission she says would prioritize issues. They will follow up on atrocities, cases and attacks on Christians and churches; monitor the progress made in those cases, take note of complaints from every individual as well as community, keep a tab on media reports to understand the community’s concerns and pursue and monitor the progress.
Another priority she says is developing Christian Heritage Centre in Delhi; where Christians from every part of India — from Kanyakumari to Kashmir irrespective of their languages and cultures –find a place to live. For her the proposed center would make the Christian community feel at home and show to the world the face of unity and solidarity as much as kindness and love.
In collaboration with the National Council of Churches in India, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India and other Christian groups she wishes to address the community’s problems.
Sr. Sneha was born in Ranbir Singh Pura in Jammu and Kashmir, close to International Border with Pakistan. Influenced by an Irish Sister, Loyola Beck, who visited the poor and needy families, hospitals, orphanages as well as prisoners and touched by her love, kindness and compassion for the poor and needy people, she embraced religious life. As a junior sister, she started visiting slums and other areas in Old Delhi. She told herself that if her ministry is socially relevant, her life will be meaningful. She did her masters in Social Work and then went on to study law.
When she completed the course, the legal unit of the Indian Social Institute (ISI) had a vacancy and she was asked to join. Her role was to prepare document on legal issues and organize para-legal trainings. She later joined Human Rights Law Networks (HRLN) in 2012.
Now as a member of the Minority Commission she is sure of addressing address the concerns of her people. She wishes to make the concerned people and authorities accountable for the lapses as well as make the administration responsible for the good of the community. (mattersindia)