Kerala DGP Loknath Behra.
Director General of Police (DGP) of Kerala, Loknath Behra on Sunday dismissed reports of transfer of the controversial Kerala nun rape case to the crime branch. Talking to reports, he said; “at present there is no move to hand over the probe to to the crime branch”.
Behra added that he has directed Ernakulam Range IG Vijay Sakhare to complete the investigation into the case as quickly as possible.
Meanwhile, five nuns on sunday accused top police officials of trying to sabotage the probe into the case. The nuns from a convent in Kottayam, to which the victim belonged, slammed the reported move to hand over the probe against Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Jalandhar diocese to the crime branch wing.
They alleged that the police officers were trying to delay the probe into the case to save Bishop Franco.
“We have full faith in the investigation being carried out by the Deputy Superintendent of Police. But the top police officials are not permitting him to carry out a free and fair investigation.
They are delaying the probe and trying to sabotage the case”, one of the nuns told reporters at Kuravilangadu in Kottayam district.
Meanwhile, members of various Catholic reformation organisations continued their protest Sunday against alleged laxity in the probe into the rape complaint filed by the nun.
The five nuns from the convent in Kuravilangadu in Kottayam had taken part in the demonstration Saturday and said they were fighting for the victim, who was denied justice by the church, government and the police.
“We are ready to go to any extent for ensuring justice to our sister,” a nun had told protesters who held placards here demanding the arrest of bishop Franco.
She had sought to know why bishop Franco had not been arrested despite “sufficient evidence” against him and also questioned the church’s stand on the matter.
The nun pointed out that 74 days had passed since the complaint was filed against bishop Franco.
Police had recorded her statements several times, but the Bishop was interrogated only once, she had alleged.
Catholic reformation organisations, including the Kerala Catholic Church Reformation Movement, are taking part in the indefinite protest seeking justice to the nun, KCRM office-bearer George Joseph said Sunday.
Meanwhile, the nuns said they have decided to initiate legal action against an Independent MLA who had allegedly attacked the victimised nun, allegedly using abusive language against her, for lodging a complaint against the bishop.
Addressing a press conference in Kottayam Saturday, Poonjar MLA PC George had sought to know why she had not complained in the initial stage of sexual misbehaviour by the bishop.
The nun has accused Jalandhar Bishop Franco of raping and having unnatural sex with her multiple times between 2014 and 2016.
A special team probing the case has said that according to preliminary investigation, Bishop Franco abused his position and repeatedly raped the nun.
Responding to a petition seeking a speedy probe, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Vaikom, K Subhash had informed the Kerala High Court on August 13 that the probe was proceeding effectively and impartially.