Saturday, 13 August, 2022
HomeIndiaGovernanceBishop Franco Mulakkal steps down, to face interrogation by Kerala police

Bishop Franco Mulakkal steps down, to face interrogation by Kerala police

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The Jalandhar bishop, who has been accused of raping of a Kerala nun, continues to plead innocence even as protest demanding action against him intensifies.

Bengaluru: Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal, who has been accused of raping of a Kerala nun, has decided to hand over his charge to his next in command — Msgr. Mathew Kokkandam.

In a circular issued in Jalandhar, he said that he has taken the decision following summons from the Kerala police to join the investigation.

“There are several contradictions in the evidence collected against me as per the police report. It is reported that I am likely to be called for further clarification by the investigating officer in Kerala,” Mulakkal said in a statement issued Saturday.

The bishop continues to plead his innocence in the case and goes on to mention that he leaves everything in the hands of god as he awaits the result of the probe.


Also read: Fake FB post claims Bishop Franco Mulakkal had intercourse with nun for ‘enlightenment’


This is being seen as the first step towards stepping down from his post.

Meanwhile, protests continue in Kerala seeking severe action against the priest. Fr Augustine, one of the Catholic priests campaigning against the injustice to the victim, told the media in Kochi,  “Just by temporarily handing over charge and coming to Kerala does not mean we will call off our strike. We will continue our agitation till he is arrested.”

Sister Anupama, one of the five nuns from the congregation who has been protesting in Kochi demanding justice to the victim, has reacted saying that their belief in the church has not waned.

“We have not left the church, but they are not listening to us. A few of them in the government have supported our cause,” she claimed.

“We have got a call from former CM V.S. Achuthanandan, but none yet from Pinarayi Vijayan (the present CM). That is why we think that we do not have much support from the government,” she added.


Also read: Kerala nun rape case: Clamour grows for intervention by Pope Francis


It was just last month, Mulakkal was interrogated by a special police team who met him at the Bishop house in Jalandhar and recorded statements of several persons there.

The bishop’s spokesperson, James, has told the media in Jalandhar that the temporary handing over does not mean that he “stepped down”.

The various groups protesting against the bishop have also sought the intervention of the Pope to take action against him and if need be, “defrock” him based on the allegations of the victim.

 

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2 COMMENTS

  1. We don’t know whether the Bishop or the nun speaks truth. It is quite unfortunate we jump to a conclusion without looking at the statements of both the persons critically.
    We become victims of our prejudice. We lack critical thinking.

  2. A welcome step forward. Let the investigation be professional, purposive, free of leaks to the media. Public pressure should ensure that there is no cover up; equally, no witch hunt.

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