The Kerala police team probing into the allegations of a nun being raped by Bishop Franco Mulakkal of the Missionaries of Jesus has been facing threats. A deputy superintendent of police recently had a miraculous escape after a lorry chased his vehicle. No further details were made available.
Kerala police are allegedly under pressure from the Pinarayi Vijayan-led Left Democratic Front government to avoid arresting Mulakkal, who reports to the Roman Catholic Church of Jalandhar.
According to Malayalam daily Mathrubhumi, it is suspected that the report prepared by the probe team looking into the case has been handed over to the bishop and the investigating officials have allegedly been lured with hefty payments to make nothing out of the case. The daily said the probe team was firm on its decision and even plans to travel to Jalandhar to arrest Mulakkal.
Earlier, reports said a priest named James Erthayil has admitted that he tried to mediate on behalf of Mulakkal. The priest, contacted by the bishop through a woman named Shobhi George, promised 10 acres land and a convent to the nun to drop the case.
In July, media reports alleged that church authorities in Kerala were trying to buy peace with the nun by luring her with offers of cash and kind. Malayalam media group Mathrubhumi had released an audiotape, revealing efforts by Erthayil to work out a compromise on the issue. The nun’s brother has also alleged that she was offered Rs five crore to withdraw the case.
In June, the nun had complained that the bishop had sexually abused her at a convent in Kurivilangad in Kottayam district between 2014 and 2016.
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