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Kerala HC seeks action taken report in bishop case
By AM Abdussalam September 11, 2018
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KOCHI: Kerala High Court on Monday sought action taken report in the sensational sex abuse case involving Jalandhar bishop and a nun, who alleged that the bishop subjected her to sexual abuse since 2014. The court directed government to submit the report within Thursday.

The police say that case was lodged by the nun against Bishop Franco Mulakkal on August 13. The government should explain what actions were taken by the police within one month after receiving the complaint. The nun had reported a murder threat against her, the court observed. The court also asked the police whether protection was ensured for the nun. “Has the government taken any measures to protect those involved in the case including the witnesses?” asked the division bench headed by chief justice. Chief justice also observed that no person is above law.

The court was considering a public appeal seeking protection for the victim and another plaint seeking the arrest of the Roman Catholic bishop. The petition also sought a time frame for finalising the hearing to ensure justice to the nun.

In an affidavit filed the court, the investigating officer Vaikom DySP had stated that Bishop Mulakkal had raped the nun on many occasions.

The hunger strike organised by Christian Council in the High Court junction entered third day on Monday. Five nuns who joined the protest on Sunday did not participate on Monday due to country-wide shut down called by opposition parties. On Sunday, the nuns alleged the state police chief DGP Loknath Behra and Ernakulam Range IG were trying to sabotage the case.

In July, the nun had lodged a rape and sexual assault complaint against a bishop based in Jalandhar, Punjab. She alleged that Jalandhar bishop Franco Mulakkal had raped her and had unnatural sex with her multiple times at a small town near Kottayam between 2014 and 2016.

Also on Monday, the National Commission for Women (NCW) summoned PC George, MLA, for using abusive language against the nun. The NCW has asked George to appear before the commission before Sept.20 to provide an explanation for making such statements while occupying a responsible position in society.

George, an independent MLA from Poonjar, had said that the nun was a prostitute. He also questioned the virginity of the victim. On Monday, he also reiterated his earlier remark and said he was ready to face any legal action.

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