The Hush Post: Bishop Franco Mulakkal has been relieved of his pastoral duties. Mulakkal was accused of raping a nun from Kerala many times between 2014 and 2016. He will not be able to carry out his pastoral duties at the Diocese of Jalandhar.
This decision was taken by Pope Francis in response to a letter written by Bishop Mulakkal on September 16. A statement by Oswald Cardinal Gracias, the president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of India (CBCI) clarified this.
The Pope has for now appointed Bishop Emeritus of the Archdiocese of Bombay Agnelo Rufino Gracias as the Apostolic administrator of the diocese of Jalandhar.
The Kerala Police is questioning Mulakkal regarding the allegations of rape.
He has filed an anticipatory bail petition in the Kerala High Court and also denied the allegations.
Bishop Franco Mulakkal alleged that the rape survivor framed him in a false case. She was removed from the post of Mother Superior, as a result of this the case was filed, he alleges.
Other than this complainant, four other nuns in the convent told the police that they knew about the sexual misadventures of the bishop, who visited the place frequently.
The rape survivor has provided evidence, including the messages she had received from the bishop.
The police have also collected evidence of the bishop’s visit to the convent.