Ker­ala Po­lice ques­tion 4 nuns, Ja­land­har Bishop not quizzed

Hindustan Times (Amritsar) - - Punjab - HT Cor­re­spon­dent let­ter­schd@hin­dus­tan­

JA­LAND­HAR: The six-mem­ber Ker­ala Po­lice team in­ves­ti­gat­ing a nun’s com­plaint of sex­ual as­sault against Ro­man Catholic Dio­cese of Ja­land­har bishop Franco Mu­lakka ques­tioned four nuns known to the com­plainant here on Satur­day.

Af­ter eight hours of ques­tion­ing, it emerged that the bishop is yet to be in­ter­ro­gated.

The team, led by Vaikom DSP K Sub­hash, en­tered the Mis­sion­ar­ies of Je­sus Con­gre­ga­tion con­vent in Ja­land­har Can­ton­ment at 11.50am and left at 7.50pm af­ter record­ing the state­ments of the four nuns.

The nuns gave their state­ments in writ­ing. The po­lice re­fused to dis­close what the nuns stated.

Mu­lakkal, 54, was booked in Kot­tayam on June 29 for sex­u­ally abus­ing the 43-year-old nun 13 times, in­clud­ing in Ja­land­har, be­tween 2014 and 2016.

The four nuns ques­tioned on Satur­day were at the Mis­sion­ar­ies of Je­sus Con­gre­ga­tion in Ja­land­har, where the com­plainant was posted as mother gen­eral till 2013.

At present, they are posted in Lud­hi­ana, Gur­daspur and Ja­land­har can­ton­ment churches.

“Ja­land­har ACP Jang Ba­hadur Sharma ac­com­pa­nied the po­lice­men from Ker­ala. They recorded the state­ments in their na­tive lan­guage (Malay­alam) which our cops don’t fol­low,” deputy com­mis­sioner of po­lice Gurmeet Singh said.

He said that the Ker­ala po­lice vis­ited Beas vil­lage in Ja­land­har on Fri­day evening but were tightlipped.

The team is in Ja­land­har for three days.

On his part, Mu­lakkal has re­futed the nun’s charges, say­ing she was tar­get­ing him for ini­ti­at­ing a probe against her for her in­volve­ment in an il­licit re­la­tion­ship.

The nun is a mem­ber of the Mis­sion­ar­ies of Je­sus Con­gre­ga­tion based in Pun­jab which runs two con­vents in Ker­ala. She was at one of the con­vents at Ku­rav­i­lana­gad in Kot­tayam.

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