Questioning of Bishop Franco begins

Questioning of Bishop Franco begins


Kochi, Sept 19: Kerala Police have started questioning of Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal, accused of raping a nun, at Crime Branch SP office in Tripunithura near Kochi on Wednesday. The Bishop, who came to Kerala after the investigation team served a notice directing him to appear for interrogation on Wednesday, arrived by 11 am at the office of Crime Branch SP.

Interrogation team includes IG Vijay Sakhare, Kottayam SP Harisankar and investigation officer Vaikom DySP K Subash. Cops have already prepared a lengthy questionnaire. Last minute, the Police have chosen the questioning venue as Tripunithura CB office considering the security reasons and availability of high-end technology for a fool proof questioning exercise. The decision on the change of venue was taken in a meeting held by Kochi Range IG Vijay Sakhare and Kottayam SP Harisankar on  Tuesday night. Earlier, the questioning was scheduled to be conducted in the office of Vaikom DySP.

In a police complaint, the nun had alleged that she has been raped and sexually exploited 14-times by the bishop since May 2014.

Though Bishop moved the Kerala High Court for anticipatory bail on Tuesday itself, the Court deferred hearing to September 25. In the anticipatory bail application, Bishop argued that the allegations were “wholly concocted and cooked up, only to wreak vengeance.”

Meanwhile, a protest by a section of nuns in Kochi which is getting more support across Kerala, continues seeking the arrest of the bishop. The protesters took out a march to Kochi Range IG Office on Wednesday.