Image Credits: RepublicWorld
The Kerala High Court (HC) on Wednesday asked Sister Lucy to vacate the Franciscan Clarist Convent at Karakkamala, saying that it will provide protection to her only outside the convent premises. Now, in an exclusive interview with Republic TV, Sister Lucy opened up on why she had to represent herself in the court and also said that if the Kerala High Court orders her to leave the convent then it 'will be a dark age in the history of the Catholic Church'.
Speaking to Republic TV, Sister Lucy revealed why she decided to represent herself in her petition asking for police protection inside and outside the convent.
"In these crucial passing weeks, one of my previous advocates had relinquished then all of a sudden I got a senior advocate. On the 6th he appeared at the court but the court told him there is nothing to do. So he also had not taken the Vakalatnama. Therefore, in a sense, we can say he also relinquished. So I thought there are very few days. Most of the lawyers said that it is difficult to fight against the Catholic church and the authorities. So, it's my life, in this case, therefore I decided to appear before the court myself as part and party in person.
"It is my life, my blood, my everything because I am leading a religious life. My petition is only to give me protection from the different troubles I am facing in the convent and around the convent. I don't know why the court is speaking in a sense that you move out and there we will give you protection (where you will stay). Therefore, I requested humbly to the court and said that there won't be anybody to speak for me in my place for my life," added Sister Lucy.
Sister Lucy also claimed that she heard from few mouths that the lawyers did not take the case as they the church is too powerful.
"In the Sister Abhaya murder case, we have seen that after a long 8 years that she is getting justice a little bit. If anybody is fighting against injustice from the part of Catholic church authorities, I think it is difficult to come forward for the lawyers and counsels to speak," Sister Lucy further said.
Sister Lucy also informed that she has submitted her statement to the Court and also explained her case to the judge.
Sister Lucy slammed the Kerala High Court and ordering her to move out of the convent and then she can have the police protection. "He is simply saying that my petition is to get police protection, but repeatedly he says that if you are out we will give whole protection but if you are staying at the convent we cannot order protection. I don't get why because I need the protection in the convent, I am a nun and nobody can oust me from the convent and throw me out of my religious life and nunhood.
"There is no question of leaving the convent because I am a nun and a nun should live in the convent. I will be in the convent because not only I have the stay order also if there is an order like that comes to move me out or force me to go out that will be a dark age in the history of the Catholic church and religious life," added Sister Lucy.
Franco Mulakkal, ex-bishop of Jalandhar diocese, has been accused of raping and forcing unnatural sex on a nun multiple times between 2014 and 2016 at the Kuruvilangadu convent in Kottayam. As the complainant came forward, nuns of the congregation came out in support for the victim, demanding CM Pinarayi Vijayan's intervention. After being arrested by the Kerala police, he was later released by the Kerala High Court on unconditional bail in October 2018 which was later extended. Another nun has now come forward alleging that Franco Mulakkal was allegedly sending her lewd messages and had called her in his room and misbehaved with her. The nun is the 14th witness in the rape case.
Kerala Police has filed a chargesheet against Franco Mulakkal under various sections ranging from Punishment for wrongful confinement, Sexual intercourse by a person in authority to Carnal Intercourse against the order of nature. Sources had said that if the charges against Franco Mulakkal are proven, he might get life imprisonment or imprisonment of not less than 10 years. Four nuns -sister Anupama along with sister Alfie, sister Josephine, sister Ancitta and sister Nina Rose who had protested against the rape accused, had alleged the church authorities' pressure to transfer them and splitting them up to dilute their protest. Meanwhile, the victim too has written about harassment from Mulakkal's aides to withdraw her case. Recently, the Supreme Court rejected Mulakkal's review plea stating that he would stand trial in the case.
(Image Credits: RepublicWorld)