KOTTAYAM: In what appears to be a major advancement in the investigation into the rape complaint against Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal, the police received a copy of the victim nun's statement, given to Changanasseri Judicial First Class Magistrate under Section 164 of the CrPC.
According to Kottayam District Police Chief Hari Sankar, the police have been verifying the details of the 164 statement and found no difference with the victim's statement given to the police in the primary analysis. "However, we are yet to study the statement in detail," he said.
He added the investigation will be extended to Jalandhar only after completing all the formalities and evidence collection in the state. As part of this, the investigation team will visit the Missionaries of Jesus' centre in Kannur, which functions under the Jalandhar diocese.
The police are very cautious about the investigation as the accused and victim belong to the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church and they do not want to make undue haste in arresting the bishop. "Before approaching the bishop, we have to complete evidence collection to get a clear picture of the allegation and counter-allegation," said a police officer. Earlier, Bishop Mulakkal had filed a complaint against the nun and her brother alleging they were threatening him after he took disciplinary action against the nun.
Meanwhile, the noose is tightening over the bishop as more complaints and revelations are come out against him. Earlier, the relatives of another nun in the congregation said she was intimidated and mentally tortured by the bishop to turn against the nun, who raised the rape complaint against the bishop.
At the same time, the police are learnt to have received proof substantiating the bishop's complaint against the nun was not genuine, as the letter threatening the bishop written by nun's relatives was fake. The man, who had reportedly written the letter, told the police that he was intimidated by the bishop to write such a letter.