World

Jalandhar Bishop Accused of Raping Kerala Nun Alleges Conspiracy

Jalandhar Bishop Accused of Raping Kerala Nun Alleges Conspiracy

Kochi: A group of nuns staged a sit-in protest at the High Court Junction bus station in Kochi demanding the arrest of Bishop of Jalandhar, Franco Mulakkal, who is accused of allegedly raping a nun.

"The Church leadership should seriously address the allegations raised by the nun", he said.

Backed up by the support of the congregation, the alleged suspect Bishop Franco Mulakkal said, "I think some internal forces are using these nuns for some advantage".

Five nuns have been protesting outside the Kerala High Court, which is hearing the case, calling for Bishop Franco Mulakkal to be arrested and the investigation to be expedited. Reportedly, Catholic reformation organizations also joined the protest which had been called by the Joint Christian Council.

She demanded removal of the Jalandhar Bishop from the post, alleging that by continuing in the position, Franco and his close associates "are using the wealth of the diocese to divert" the course of the police investigation. They said that she was to meet the media for the first time on Sunday but had since backed out after George's comments.

Noting that she felt the Catholic church was still doubting her over the argument as to why she allowed him to sexually abuse her multiple times, the nun said she had tremendous fear and shame to bring this out into the open. "But in the light of my experience I am beginning to think that the Church is a stepmother to women and laity".

"Seventy-four days have passed since the complaint was filed against Bishop Franco".

"We are not getting justice from the police, church authorities and the government".

However, all the allegations have been denied by the bishop.

Copies of the letter were sent to 21 others, including Cardinal Oswald Gracias and Delhi Metropolitan Archbishop, Anil Couto. Claiming that she and those supporting her in her trauma are being virtually ostracised, including denial of Holy Mass at her convent in Kuruvilangad, the letter says that "the silence on the part of the church is leading me to further humiliation and character assassination".

They have alleged that top police officials were trying to sabotage the probe. One of the nuns, while slamming the police's inaction in nabbing the accused said, "The police have repeatedly taken the statement of the victim nun, but they have taken Franco Mulakkal's statement only once".

Four nuns are protesting near the Kerala High Court in Kochi. "This is a time of crisis.I am going through painful agony.I tell everyone to pray to God.let the truth prevail", he said.


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