Karwar: 28 November, 2020: Bangalore Archdiocese continues to strengthen its network with suffragan dioceses as it reaches out to the flood victims of North Karnataka. This time in the diocese of Karwar the inauguration of 8 new houses took place on Saturday November 28. Most Rev. Dr. Peter Machado, Archbishop of Bangalore, along with Most Rev. Derek Fernandes, Bishop of Belgaum and Apostolic Administrator of the sede vacante Diocese of Karwar inaugurated the houses in Haliyala, a locality inhabited by the Siddi people.
The Siddis of Karnataka are an ethnic group inhabiting India. The members of this ethnicity are descended from Bantu peoples from South-East Africa that were brought to the Indian subcontinent as slaves by Portuguese merchants. There is a 50,000 strong Siddi population across India, of which more than a third lives in Karnataka. In Karnataka, they are concentrated around Yellapur, Haliyala, Ankola, Joida, Mundgod and Sirsi taluks of Uttara Kannada and in Khanapur of Belagavi and Khalaghatagi of Dharavada district.
In his address, the Archbishop profusely thanked the donors and institutions and the Karwar Diocese Development Commission (KDDC) which took care of the construction of the houses. Archbishop Peter Machado was accompanied by Rev. Fr. Naveen Kumar, Director of BMSSS, Rev. Fr. Cyril Victor of the Archdiocesan Media Center, Rev. Fr. Sagayanathan, Parish Priest of Krista Prabhalaya Church, Jayanagar and Mr. Santhosh Sequeira.
The Donors who gave financial support are: Our Lady of Vailankanni Church, Yelahanka, St. Francis School, Koramangala, Konkani Catholic Association, Religious Educational Institutions, Christha Prabhalaya Church, Jayanagara, Archdiocesan Educational Institutions, Archdiocesan Parishes, Religious Congregations of Bangalore and Archdiocese Of Bangalore.
The devastating floods in August 2019 rendered thousands homeless in the State of Karnataka. The situation in the district of Uttara Kannada too was not different. The fruit of the initiative and tireless efforts from the Diocese of Karwar, KDDC and the generosity from the part of benevolent donor agencies and individual donors is the joy on the faces of 08 families who received support for the construction of 08 new houses and 38 families who received support for the repair of damaged houses. Of the 46 houses, Caritas India provided financial support to repair 38 damaged houses and provided support to 73 families for livelihood. The Archdiocese of Bangalore through Caritas India supported the Diocese of Karwar to Construct 8 new houses.
Bishop Derek Fernandes whole heartedly thanked the Archbishop and the Archdiocese of Bangalore for the initiative to build homes for the flood victims in many dioceses of North Karnataka.
Archbishop Peter Machado also travelled to Honnavar where he blessed and inaugurated two houses. The beneficiaries were all in smiles for the gift of new houses and expressed their gratitude to the donors.
- Fr. Cyril Victor Joseph
Archdiocesan Communications Center