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Roman Catholic Bishop charged for raping Nun

A Roman Catholic Bishop, Franco Mulakkal, was Tuesday charged by Police in India for repeatedly raping a nun in a convent, officials said.

Pope Francis has already suspended Mulakkal from office at the bishop’s own request.

A nun, in her forties, accused him of sexually assaulting her over a period of two years since May 2014.

Hari Sankar, police chief of Kerala state’s Kotttayam district, said the police charge sheet was filed in a trial court in the Pala area.

“He has been charged with rape, illegal confinement, unnatural sex and intimidation under provisions of the Indian Penal Code,’’ Sankar said by phone.

Mulakkal, who faces a maximum punishment of life imprisonment, has rejected the charges.

Nuns and activists held widespread protests after which police arrested him in September 2018.

He was granted bail 30 days later.

“The filing of the charge sheet clears the decks for the trial to begin,’’ Sankar said.

The charge sheet includes statements from 83 witnesses, including senior clergy and 25 nuns, said in a statement from “Save Our Sisters Action Council” a group of members from India’s Roman Catholic Church.

The scandal is a major setback for Kerala’s Catholic Church which has been dealing with similar cases of sexual abuse in recent months.

The southern state has one of the largest Christian populations in India.

About a fourth of India’s Christians live in Kerala, where it is believed that the apostle Saint Thomas established Christianity in AD 52.

Christians comprise about 2.3 per cent of India’s 1.3 billion population according to census data, and over 70 per cent of them are Catholic.



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Olusegun Fayose

Olusegun Sunday Fayose, founder of RovingNaija.com is a Marketing Communication executive with experience in Corporate Communication, Public Relations, Branding and Advertising. He is also a seasoned media professional with roots in print, broadcast and online journalism. Segun, who last managed the Group Corporate Communication function of MultiChoice Nigeria, is upbeat that through responsible, fair, accurate and courageous reporting; and the support of readers, followers and patrons, Nigeria takes a step closer to a regime of accountability, fairness and equity in governance.

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