Key witness against rape accused Bishop Mulakkal found dead in Jalandhar

Bishop Francis Mulakkal

Jalandhar | A key witness in the Kerala Nun rape case against Bishop Francis Mulakkal was found dead at the St. Mary’s Church in Jalandhar on Monday.

Father Kuriakose Katthuthara had earlier filed a complaint and recorded a statement to the police against Bishop Mulakkal in connection with the rape case of a nun of Missionaries of Jesus. Katthuthara’s family has accused the police of delay in informing about the death Father Katthuthara. The family said that they received a call around 11 am on Monday and were told that Kuriakose had died on Friday night. “The delay in informing them about the death has added to their suspicion,” they added.

Informing the media about the death of Father Katthuthara, Father Peter from Jalandhar diocese told media, “Today in the morning at 10, he didn’t wake up, so the sisters went and checked on him. When he didn’t open the door, they called for help. The door was then broken and Kuriakose was found unconscious and there was vomit in the room. We took him to the hospital, where he was declared brought dead.” Father Peter also ruled out the connection of death with Francis Mulakkal case. He said,” We are not enemies, we are all good friends.”

Earlier in an interview to local media, Father Katthuthara had alleged of being under severe pressure by church officials for supporting the nun who had charged rape allegations against the bishop. He said, “The sisters had approached me complaining about Bishop Franco. They did not approach the Kerala police fearing the bishop. In fact, I fear what will happen to me for speaking out against him.”

The Kerala High Court had earlier last week granted an conditional bail to Roman Catholic Bishop Francis Mulakkal. He is facing allegations of repeatedly raping and sexually harassing a nun from 2014 to 2016.

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