Nuns protesting to demand the arrest of Bishop Franco Mulakkal for allegedly raping their fellow nun. (File Photo)
Nuns protesting to demand the arrest of Bishop Franco Mulakkal for allegedly raping their fellow nun. (File Photo)

Bishop Agnelo halts transfer of Kerala nuns out of Kuruvilangadu convent

ANI | Updated: Feb 09, 2019 19:20 IST

Jalandhar (Punjab), [India], Feb 9 (ANI): Bishop Agnelo of the Jalandhar diocese on Saturday directed the Missionaries of Jesus congregation to withhold transfer orders of the five Kerala nuns who protested against rape accused Bishop Franco Mulakkal until the completion of proceedings in the case. 
In the letter, he directed the authorities to not to issue any letters to the five nuns without his explicit permission.
"There will be no move from Diocese of Jalandhar to oust you from Kuravilangad Church as long as you are needed for the court case," read the letter.
Earlier in January, sister Anupama along with three other nuns who had pledged support for the nun allegedly raped by Mulakkal had written a letter to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan seeking his intervention in the matter.
In their letter, the nuns stated that the Bishop is very powerful and can sabotage the case.
"We and Sr Neena Rose who is also an inmate in the house are facing imminent threats from the de-facto complainant's side, in connivance with the authorities of our own congregation for supporting and helping the victim in the above crime. We think it is our duty to support and 'to be with' the victim of rape, who is our colleague/a sister. The recent developments show that we are not safe in any aspects considering the power, influence and the past activities of the other side. Needless to say, the accused Bishop Franco is very powerful in all aspects. His aim is to sabotage the case and to escape somehow, from the crime he had committed and to go scot-free," the letter read.
Last year in April, the Missionaries of Jesus issued transfer orders, but the four nuns refused to move out from Kerala's Kuravilangad Convent.
Notably, these nuns had issued public statements in connection with the rape case against Mulakkal last year. 
However, on the basis of the findings unearthed by its inquiry commission, the Missionaries of Jesus in September 2018 stated that the four nuns were influenced by the "thoughts of rationalists."
The organisation also claimed that on the day of the incident as cited by the nun, the Bishop was not present in the premises of Kuravilangad Convent.
Bishop Mulakkal has been accused of raping and forcing unnatural sex on the nun multiple times between 2014 and 2016. (ANI)