Inconsistent versions of survivor pose questions on her credibility: Court while acquitting Bishop Franco Mulakkal
In his 289-page verdict, the judge said the survivor's claim that she was raped on 13 occasions under duress cannot be relied on the basis of her solitary testimony.
Reacting to the acquittal of Bishop Franco Mulakkal, rebel Catholic nun Sr Lucy Kalapura said “Lady Justice had been brutally murdered in the court room.”
The court said it was evident that the victim was swayed under the influence of others who had other vested interests in the matter.
This may be the first occasion in the history of the Indian judiciary that a cardinal and major archbishop of the Indian Catholic Church was examined as a witness in a rape case against a bishop
Kalappura, who took part in a protest by nuns seeking the arrest of Bishop Franco Mulakkal, accused of raping a nun, was expelled by the FCC.
The trip to the convent is part of the police's evidence gathering. According to the victim's complains, Mulakkal raped her at the VIP rest room, where he has been staying.
The SIT on Saturday got the bishop in custody for two days after presenting him before Judicial First Class Magistrate Court in Pala.
Since no political party was willing to back them, the protesting nuns had to rely solely on the civil society’s support to expose the injustice meted out to them.
Franco complained of chest pain when he was being taken to Kottayam Police club from the Crime Branch office in Thrippunithura in Ernakulam district Friday night, they said.
It was after high drama and suspense that began around noon that top police officers finally confirmed the arrest of the bishop, around 8 pm.
Senior public prosecutor Suman Chakravarthy said on Friday the police acted only within the framework of law.
The decision was taken during a one-hour meeting of Kochi Range IG Vijay Sakhre with the Director General of Prosecution’s office here.
Agnelo Rufino Gracias, Titular Bishop of Molicunza and Auxiliary Bishop emeritus of Bombay, has been appointed as the administrator of the Jalandhar Diocese.
Nearly three months after the nun made the rape allegation, Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal was interrogated at the Tripunithura Crime Branch SP Office for more than seven hours on Wednesday.
Though the bishop had left for Kerala from Jalandhar on Monday, the police did not divulge his whereabouts even as they waited at the CB office.