A Kerala nun, who had filed a rape case against Bishop Franco Mulakkal, approached the National Human Rights Commission on Wednesday, accusing the priest of harassing her and her fellow nuns through various social media platforms. She had earlier filed a similar complaint with the National and State Women's Commissions.
"From the time the sexual assault was reported, I have been subjected to extreme humiliation and intimidations in various forms," the nun said in her complaint to the NHRC.
The nun, currently residing at the St Francis Mission Home in Kuravilangad, filed a rape case against the Bishop on June 27, 2018. The nun alleged that Bishop Franco had raped and forced her to have unnatural sex on many occasions between 2014 and 2017. However, the Bishop has denied the charges as "baseless and concocted."
In her latest complaint to the NHRC, the nun said attempts were being made through church authorities and various church social media organisations to spread rumours against her and her companion sisters who are also key witnesses in the case.
She said from the very beginning of the case they had been subjected to the “vilest forms of character assassination".
"False statements, imputations and fabricated stories tarnishing our reputation and character are being systematically spread through the YouTube channel, and we believe Bishop Franco and his group are behind this agenda," she claimed.
The nun also accused the YouTube channel of circulating her photographs, revealing her identity.
Mulakkal, who is still serving as the bishop in Jaladhar, was granted bail last year in October , after being in custody for almost a month. The bail was issued on conditions, including asking the Bishop not to enter Kerala after his release from the sub-jail in Kottayam and to surrender his passport. Mulakkal has also been asked to present himself before the police every fortnight. He also has to appear before the probe officials as and when requested by them.