Kerala nun rape case: Vatican intervenes, orders probe

Thiruvananthapuram, Sep 15 : The Vatican, the highest seat of authority in Christianity is considering to constitute  a one-member panel to investigate allegations of rape against Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Jalandhar by a 44-year-old nun.There are reports from media agencies  that rape-accused Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal has recused himself from priesthood.

The Vatican has intervened into the  Kerala Nun rape case after the nun had recently sought the urgent intervention of the Vatican for justice and demanded the bishop’s removal as the head of the Jalandhar diocese, questioning why the church was “closing its eyes to the truth” when she had mustered the courage to make public her suffering.

The church representative from India is in Vatican to discuss the issue and  is expecting intervention in the coming days.

 Cardinal Oswald Gracis, who is the current president of the Conference of Catholic Bishops in India is likely to head the probe.

Kerala Nun rape case against Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal has been brought to the notice of the Vatican after she alleged that Bishop Mulakkal was using “political and money power” to “bury” the case against him.

The nun has accused the clergyman of repeated sexual assault between 2014 and 2016. The bishop has, however, dismissed the allegations as “baseless and concocted”, insisting she levelled charges against the Catholic order as it had rejected her demand for favours.

​On Friday, Missionaries of Jesus, the congregation to which both the accused Bishop and the complainant nun belong to, denied all the allegations made against Franco Mulakkal.

 The nun has accused the Bishop of Jalandhar of raping her as many as 13 times while confining her to a guest room at the Kuravilangad convent in Kerala between 2014 and 2016.

An FIR was registered against the bishop and a 114-page detailed statement was taken from the nun and other inmates of the convent.

However, Mulakkal has denied any wrongdoing and termed it a conspiracy hatched against him.

A special investigative team (SIT) is investigating the claims made against the Bishop on the orders of the Kerala High Court.

 

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