Nun rape: Bishop questioned for 7 hours on Day 2

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Tripunithura (Kerala) Sep 20 (IANS) Bishop Franco Mulakkal, accused of raping a nun, was questioned for the second consecutive day on Thursday and has been asked to return on Friday, a police official said.

The bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese in Jalandhar, Punjab, was questioned for seven hours near here at the Crime Branch office.

Kottayam Superintendent of Police Harishankar told the media they wanted to finish the interrogation on Thursday but could not do so.

“He has been asked to report at 10.30 a.m on Friday. We are now verifying the things that he has told us and there is no confusion. Our three teams will verify it by tomorrow.

“We have sought legal consultations on the anticipatory bail plea that he has moved and we expect to get the advice on this Friday,” Harishankar said, adding that by Friday, they will be able to take a holistic decision after looking into all aspects.

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Accompanied by his counsel and a few priests, Mulakkal arrived at the Crime Branch office around 11 a.m., even as demands for his arrest grew. Nuns have been protesting in Kochi for 13 days.

The bishop spent the night at a plush hotel in Kochi.

He dodged a large media contingent waiting outside the hotel as he slipped away in a different car while the vehicle used on Wednesday was kept parked outside the hotel.

Like on Wednesday, Inspector General Vijay Sakhre, Harishankar and his deputy K. Subhash held a meeting at the IG office in Kochi ahead of the interrogation.

The Kerala High Court has already agreed to hear Mulakkal’s anticipatory bail plea on September 25.

A Kerala nun has accused Mulakkal of repeatedly sexually abusing her between 2014 and 2016.

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

Mulakkal was questioned by the police team led by Subhash in August at his Jalandhar office and has denied all the charges levelled against him by the nun.



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