Feb 11, 2009
Ronald Colaco, a well known community leader, philanthropist, and a leading entrepreneur is initiating a campaign to promote political and leadership awareness among the Christian community members in the state of Karnataka.
Colaco has earned a name for himself as man for all religions, by donating for every cause. Be it a Temple, Church, Mosque or to build a charity organization, police station, or a house for the poor, Colaco has helped . He is man accepted by people of all castes, religion, or creed.
Daijiworld correspondent caught up with him and in the conversation, Colaco shared his views and action plans in bringing up the community.
He specifically talked about the Christian community in the state and the need to bring about an awareness to bring them on the frontline without any hidden agendas or hurting the sentiments of other communities.
"Religious leaders, parishioners and leaders of the community should stay away from internal politics and promote the laity to take up leadership in society, in the state and national politics in general and in the administration", he said.
Colaco said that , "It is unfortunate that the Christian community has not taken any active participation in the politics in the past, partly due to the lack of enthusiasm and also due to our Clergy not doing enough to encourage them"
Colaco has an action plan to bring the community members to the forefront, specially today's youth.
Federation Christian Association (of all Christian denominations) established two years ago under the leadership of Colaco has drawn up a plan to open a Federation unit in every Taluk of the state. The 170 units would be equipped with an office, a secretary , a computer networking system that that will enable all Christians of the Taluk to enroll themselves.
So far 12 Taluks, namely,Chickmagalur, Balehonnur, Koppa, Shimoga, Sakleshpur, Belur, Bangalore, udupi, Bantwal, Moodubidri - Karkal, Kolar, Badravathi have directly benefitted from this plan.
What is the Purpose of Federation?
Colaco says, unity among all community members is a prime purpose.
'Make them equally responsible for all the happenings within and outside the community. We make them to respond effectively against atrocities committed against Christian Institutions, churches only through legal actions and peaceful means."
"Creating network to help remote villages is also another prime purpose “ he says.
Colaco also aims to get benefits for the Federation by obtaining all the facilities available through the minority development board & commission as per the needs of the people of each area.
He also hopes to promote the Christian community by bringing good leadership to the forefront, by encouraging and supporting them to contest in the Village Panchayat, Taluk Panhyat, Dist Panchayat, Corporation, Assembly, and Parliament elections.
Colaco also went on to say that the Federation would encourage intelligent boys and girls of the Christian community to take part in the administration by qualifying themselves under KAS, IAS, IFS, IRS, IPS programmes
"There is also another important aim ahead of the Federation, to coordinate and maintain cordial relations with various secular organizations by having frequent interactions , thereby maintaining peace and communal harmony" he says.
Though these aims theoretically look easy, practically it will take some time to implement. Though difficult, it is not an impossible task. Colaco who has personally funded this organization is optimistic about the smooth progress of the federation.
"Many organizations, NGOs and even political parties have supported our views. But we are not seeking any help and support from them. This should be an independent unit and should be run by young and capable leaders of the community " says a confident Colaco. He has himself spent a lot of time visiting the units, talking to the youth and motivating them to promote community causes.
Ronald Colaco is a well deserved leader for this federation as he is widely accepted by all. Being a Christian , he has shown to the world that people of all faiths can co-exist in this country. Ever since 1991 he has contributed to the building and betterment of several temples like Shri Venkataramana at Tarabanahally, Bangalore North, Chamundeshwari Temple at Sadhahalli, Shiva Temple at Shringeri, and the Muneshawra Temple .he donated complete cost. Likewise his contribution has gone to several religious places of worship. "I wish similar gestures come from members of other communities and groups to construct few churches and mosques” he said.
When asked about the recent communal disharmony among certain groups which led to violence in Mangalore , Colaco sadly says ,"This kind of disharmony is created by a very small percentage of people. We should not hold the entire community to ransom for the actions of a few unruly people.”