The Kerala police are planning to summon the Bishop of Jalandhar Franco Mullakkal for questioning even as the nun who raised sexual assault charges against him recorded her statement before a court in Kottayam district.

In four-hour recording before Thriruvalla first class judicial magistrate on Thursday she reiterated her charges against the bishop and said she has enough evidences to prove the assault. The investigating team had earlier moved an application in the court to record her statement under Section 164 of the CrPC.

A senior officer of the police team said her statement was recorded before the court to avoid retraction at a later stage. He said the arrest of the bishop was imminent. Earlier police were planning to send a team to Jalandhar to question the accused but he later informed that he was ready appear before them when required. A section of the church is making last-ditch efforts to placate the nun but she insisted she will go ahead with the case.

“We are under tremendous pressure to withdraw the case but we will not budge. There should be an end to such unhealthy practices,” said the brother of nun adding the whole family will stand with her.

Last week a 43-year-old nun, also a mother superior, had complained to the police that Mullakkal had raped her 13 times between 2014 and 2016. The nun is a member of the Missionaries of Jesus congregation based in Punjab which runs two convents in Kerala. She was heading one of the convents in Kuravilanagad in Kottayam.

In her complaint she alleged the bishop raped her in the convent. After checking the visitors’ diary the investigating team later found that the bishop was in the convent on days on which the alleged rape took place. But the bishop pleaded innocence saying he was implicated for unearthing financial irregularities in the convent.

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