Thiruvananthapuram, Sep 20: Bishop Franco Mulakkal, who has been accused of repeated sexual assault by a Kerala nun, appeared before the special investigation team for questioning today. The accused clergyman was interrogated by the Kerala police team on Wednesday for several hours and was asked to appear again at the crime branch office in Thrippunithura at 11 am.
Before the interrogation today, Kottayam Superintendent of Police Hari Sankar said about 50 per cent of the questioning was over and the process was expected to be completed by evening.
The police were trying to reach to a conclusion after solving the contradictions in the statements, he added.
Stating that the accused was cooperating with the investigation, the officer said a decision on the arrest would be taken after the interrogation was over.
When asked about the "contradictions" in the statements of the alleged victim, the witnesses and Mulakkal, as claimed by police earlier, Sankar said,"That's the purpose of interrogation. We will reflect on it after it is over."
Protest against bishop enters 12th day
The protest by Catholic reformist forums and some nuns demanding action against Mulakkal entered day 12 on Wednesday.
Vanchi Square, the protest venue, near Kerala High Court in Kochi is alive with a steady stream of people from different walks of life, including activists, the common man and regular churchgoers dropping in to express their solidarity.
In June, the police filed charges against Mulakkal after the nun in the Missionaries of Jesus congregation filed a complaint accusing him of raping her 13 times between 2014 and 2016 in Kottayam. She said she had no choice but to go to the police after church authorities ignored her complaints and took no action against the bishop.
Mulakkal has denied the charges and accused the nun of taking revenge on him for ordering an inquiry into a complaint against her. He filed a complaint against the complainant and five other nuns, accusing them of framing him.