Kerala Cops, Under Fire, To Decide On Rape-Accused Bishop's Arrest

Kerala Cops, Under Fire, To Decide On Rape-Accused Bishop's Arrest

Kerala Cops, Under Fire, To Decide On Rape-Accused Bishop's Arrest

In the lengthy letter to Giambattista Diquattro, Vatican's Apostolic Nuncio (a diplomatic mission), the nun, who has accused Bishop Franco rape and having unnatural sex with her multiple times between 2014 and 2016, said she has turned to the Church authorities for justice.

The statement consists of the same allegations that were raised by Franco Mulakkal against the complainant nun during evidence collection.

The demonstrations started on Saturday and continued throughout the weekend in Thiruvananthapuram, fuelled by an incendiary press conference in which a politician questioned the account of the bishops's alleged victim, a 46-year-old nun, and described her as a prostitute. On Monday, the Kerala High Court directed the state government to inform it about the steps taken by the special investigation team of the Kerala Police probing the case.

George Joseph, the president of the Joint Christian Council, one of the groups organising the protests, accused senior politicians and church leaders of interfering in the case.

The protesting nuns rejected the charge and said they will continue their agitation till justice was delivered.

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"Though Bishop Franco had sexually abused me several times, I could not reveal the full story to my Superior General or to her Councilors". The anti-church elements are pushing these nuns forward to raise their own issues. "Though there were earlier instances of allegations of sexual abuse by priests, it is a rare and first-time incident that a nun openly registered protest and submitted a complaint against the bishop".

The congregation's statement repeated the same claim and argument. "We would like to know is there any provision in Canon Law for justice for nuns and women?" "We suspect nuns have been forced into the protest by external influence".

Copies of the letter were sent to 21 others, including Cardinal Oswald Gracias and Delhi Metropolitan Archbishop, Anil Couto.

They have alleged that top police officials were trying to sabotage the probe.

Terming the language used by the MLA as "deeply disturbing", NCW Chairperson Rekha Sharma said the Commission seriously condemns "such objectionable and derogatory statements made by a person who occupies responsible position in the society".

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