Indian bishop’s rape trial enters crucial stage

The trial of an Indian bishop accused of raping a nun has reached a crucial stage after another bishop and three nuns testified against him.

Bishop Kurien Valiakandathil of Bhagalpur Diocese, in the eastern Indian state of Bihar, appeared before the court in Kerala’s Kottayam district on March 12, where Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Jalandhar is standing trial.

Bishop Mulakkal, based in northern Punjab state, is accused of raping a former superior-general of the Missionaries of Jesus, a diocesan congregation under him, multiple times between 2014-16.

He was charged with rape after the nun went to Kerala police in June 2018 and accused him of attacking her in her convent in the village of Kuravilangad during his frequent visits there.

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