A court in Kerala on Thursday framed charges against deposed bishop Franco Mulakkal in a rape case filed against him by a nun, PTI reported. Mulakkal allegedly raped the nun multiple times between 2014 and 2016, but he has denied the charges against him.
The Kottayam Additional Sessions Court judge read out the charges to Mulakkal, including repeated rape, misuse of authority, punishment for wrongful confinement and use of criminal intimidation to outrage the modesty of a woman, among other sections of the Indian Penal Code.
The judge posted the matter for hearing on September 16, when the nun will be examined in the court.
Last week, the Supreme Court had refused to entertain an appeal by Mulakkal for relief in the case and said there was no merit in his petition. On August 7, the deposed bishop was granted bail by the Kerala court, with strict conditions that he should not leave the state and directed him to attend all court hearings in the case.
The 43-year-old nun, a member of the Missionaries of Jesus congregation, filed the complaint in 2018. However, Mulakkal accused the nun of seeking revenge for ordering an inquiry into a complaint against her. He was removed from his post after the allegations.
Earlier in February, another nun who is a witness in the rape trial against Mulakkal alleged that he had made unwanted physical contact with her. In her statement, which is part of a chargesheet filed by the Kerala Police last year, the nun alleged that the incident took place in Mulakkal’s room at a convent.