As per latest reports, Bishop Franco Mulakkal’s bail application was rejected and he was sent to police custody till 24th September. The 54-year-old clergyman was produced in a magistrate court in Pala.
Despite the initial delay in the arrest of the Bishop, Kerala police acted subsequently upon the incriminating pieces of evidence present against Bishop Franco Mulakkal of the Archdiocese of Jalandhar, Punjab, for allegedly raping a nun from Kerala on multiple occasions and the complaints filed by the victim alleging that she has been receiving death threats since she had filed the complaint against the Bishop.
He was earlier discharged from the government hospital in the city where he was admitted following complaints of chest pain, officials sources said. He had complained of pain in his chest while being taken to Kottayam Police club from the Crime Branch office in Thrippunithura in Ernakulam district Friday night, they said. After being kept under medical supervision for over 6 hours and cardiac-related tests performed, his condition is said to be normal.
A nun from Kerala had accused Bishop Franco Mulakkal, the Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Jalandhar to have raped her at a guest house in Kuravilangad in May 2014 and exploited her sexually on several other occasions. The nun had registered a complaint before the Kottayam district Police chief Harishankar in June this year.
The nun had further alleged that she had approached the Syro-Malabar Church authorities over the matter but no action was taken against the Bishop which made her approach the Police.
The Bishop had also registered a complaint against the nun accusing her of blackmailing him after disciplinary action was initiated against her. The Bishop also alleged that the nun’s family had threatened to entrap him in a rape case if he did not withdraw the order against her.
Mulakkal, wrote to the Vatican on Sunday asking to step down temporarily as protests and calls for his arrest grew. The Vatican accepted his request on Thursday.
For the first time in the history, the nuns have come together to castigate the Bishop for his abhorrent deed. Meanwhile, there are people like PC George, an independent MLA from Kerala, who clearly displayed his insensitivity and inhumanity towards woman by referring to the nun who has accused the bishop of rape as ‘prostitute’ and even questioned her character. With all the evidence being out in the open the Missionaries of Jesus Congregation too has added insult to injury by calling the rape accused Bishop Franco Mulakkal “an innocent soul” and said he cannot be crucified “based on such allegations”.