Kerala Police team meets nuns in Jalandhar

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Jalandhar : Even though it failed to meet the bishop accused of sexually abusing a senior nun, a team of the Kerala Police met some nuns in Punjab's Jalandhar district on Saturday.

The Kerala Police team, which was given protection by their Punjab counterpart, arrived at the congregation of Missionaries of Jesus, the headquarters of Christian centres in the region, for investigation.

The team met some former nuns of the Jalandhar diocese on Friday and Saturday.

Police sources said the Kerala team is expected to meet and question Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Roman Catholic Diocese in Jalandhar on Sunday.

The Kerala Police team arrived in Punjab's Jalandhar city, around 155 km from Chandigarh, on Friday, but failed to meet the controversial bishop, who is accused of sexually abusing a nun.

The Punjab Police, fearing law and order trouble, provided protection to the Kerala team.

Several followers of the diocese gathered at its campus in Jalandhar on Friday after hearing about the arrival of the six-member Kerala police team, led by Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) A.T. Subhash.

A nun had alleged in June that Mulakkal sexually abused her several times at a convent in Kuruvalangadu near Kottayam between 2014 to 2016. An FIR was registered against the bishop and a 114-page detailed statement was taken from the nun and other inmates of the convent.

Mulakkal has denied any wrongdoing. A spokesman for the diocese told media that no wrong had been done by the bishop and that the allegations were being made by the nun at the instigation of vested interests.

Earlier, statements were taken from the head of the Syro-Malabar Church Cardinal Mar George Alencherry and also a few other former nuns who were residents at the convent.