KOTTAYAM: “Shocking”, “justice denied”, “extremely unfortunate” -- these were some of the reactions from the public and prominent personalities after the trial court acquitted Bishop Franco Mulakkal in the nun rape case.
“Money and muscle power have won. We are distraught,” said Sr. Anupama, one of the nuns who acted as the spokesperson for the victim through the last 3-4 years, speaking to reporters outside her convent at Kuravilangad. “We can’t believe this verdict.”
National Commission for Women chairperson Rekha Sharma expressed shock at the verdict. “Shocked at the judgment of Kerala Additional District and Sessions Court. The victim nun must go to the higher court. NCW is with her in this fight for justice,” she tweeted.
While actor Rima Kallingal shared a photo of the nuns of Kuravilangadu with the hashtag ‘Avalkoppam’ (With her), Parvathy Thiruvothu wrote ‘Always With Her’ on her Facebook page along with the photo of the nuns.
A shocker to probe team
Kottayam: The judgment came as a shocker to the prosecution, the investigation team as well as the complainant. Responding to the media, special public prosecutor Jithesh J Babu said an appeal would be filed in the higher court. “I am completely unaware of the grounds on which the case was dismissed,” he said. Former Kottayam district police chief Harisankar, who oversaw the investigation, aired his strong dissatisfaction with the verdict.
According to him, it was an unexpected verdict as the prosecution and the investigation teams expected 100 per cent conviction in the case. He added that the verdict is an aberration of various orders of the higher courts, including the Supreme Court, with regard to rape cases. “Definitely, the verdict would stand out in the Indian judicial system. We will verify the interpretations of the court in arriving at the judgment and file an appeal,” he said. He added that the judgment would give a wrong message to society.