Hate Crime: Indian Catholic priest stabbed in Melbourne church

Rev Tomy Kalathoor Mathew
Rev Tomy Kalathoor Mathew. Image from Facebook

Melbourne, March 20: In recent days hate crimes are increasing in the United States. But this time a hate crime news coming from Australia, one of the nations famous among hate crimes against Indians.

In an alleged hate crime, an Indian Catholic priest was attacked by a 72-year-old man while leading the Sunday mass in a Melbourne church, according to media reports from there.

It is believed that, xenophobia may be the main reason behind the attack. The priest was stabbed in the neck, moments before he was about to say mass at a Melbourne church, reports News.com.au.

According to the news report, it is believed that the offender told the priest that because he was an Indian, he must be a Hindu or a Muslim and therefore can’t be saying mass.

They began to quarrel each other and the man allegedly produced a kitchen knife from his pants and stabbed Rev Mathew in the neck in front of lots of parishioners.
Several people on the church premises tried to stop the attacker, but he broke free and fled from the scene.

He was later seen on Minona Street, where he escaped some worshipers who pursued him.

The man has been charged for stabbing Rev Tomy Kalathoor Mathew, 48, in the neck moments before the priest was due to give the 11 a.m. Italian-language mass on Sunday.

He has been charged with intentionally and recklessly causing injury and bailed to appear in the Broadmeadows Magistrates’ Court on June 13.

 Father Tomy is recovering from nonlife-threatening injuries in hospital.

The attack was described as “appalling” by the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne.