Lookout notice for US evangelists

via Dily Pioneer - Kochi published on October 13, 2011

Lookout notices have been issued at all airports in the country for detention of US evangelist William Lee and two of his companions who had been conducting religious propagation conventions in the name of musical programmes in Kerala in violation of visa norms.

The police said evangelists Lee, Ron Kenoly and a woman associate would be blacklisted so that they would not be able to travel to India again. Searches were on all over Kerala for Lee and his associates who had gone into hiding during a search in Kochi on Wednesday night. Steps were also on to find the leaders of Faith Leaders Church of God who had brought them to Kerala.

The police action was on the basis of Intelligence reports that Lee and his associates, who had come to India on tourist visas, were indulging in evangelical activities in various parts of the State. The three gave escaped a police search during a religious programme held in the garb of musical convention at Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium at Kaloor in Kochi.

Sunil Jacob, Assistant Commissioner of Police, said that a case had been registered against Lee who held the programme, Musical Splash 2011, at Kaloor in violation of visa norms. Sources in the police did not rule out the possibility that the two associates of Lee could have left the country. He said the Police Cyber Cell was trying to track him through his mobile connection.

The police had reached the stadium in Kaloor on Wednesday night on specific Intelligence report on the activities of Lee to ask him to leave the country immediately. But as the police arrived, Lee surreptitiously left the place. Inspection at his hotel proved that he had not returned but had not checked out either.

Intelligence officials have learned that William Lee had held musical conventions for religious propagation at Kunnamkulam in Thrissur district on October 7, 8 and 9. There are also reports that he had told his close disciples in Faith Leaders that he was not planning to leave India soon and that the police would not be able to stop him from his mission.

Like other Faith Leaders programmes, Musical Splash 2011 in Kochi was planned as a three-day event to popularize their school of Christianity through “Gospel Music Pageantry”. Ron Kenoly and his music troupe, Mizmor Harmonic, had held such “pageantry” in Thiruvalla, Pathanamthitta in December last.

There are reports that millions of rupees are flowing into India, especially Kerala, for evangelical activities. Huge sums of money have reportedly come in for the Faith Leaders programme as well. Sources in the police said efforts were on to find out the details of financial transactions behind such programmes.

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