Two days after Bishop Franco Mulakkal, who was accused of raping a nun in Kerala, has reportedly been granted a hero's welcome in Jalandhar on Wednesday. With garlands and flower petals showered on him by the members of the church, Bishop Franco Mulakkal was also felicitated with a grand march by his followers who were expressing their happiness upon his return to the city. Franco Mulakkal was granted a conditional bail on October 15.
Republic TV has also learnt that the Bishop also gave long lectures and speeches to the gathering at the church after receiving the grand welcome. Further, in his address to the mass, he asserted that while the police case against him for the alleged rape of a nun in Kerala is still going on, he will keep on performing his duties towards the people and will keep on serving the church.
Following his grand welcome, he went onto thank the people of the state, expressing his satisfaction with the probe in the Kerala nun rape case:
"I thank the people of Punjab. It is because of their wishes I am out. I am satisfied with the probe and I am cooperating with the police. I have faith in the system," said Franco Mulakkal.
Although, Franco Mulakkal got the bail, there are certain conditions attached to it by the court, which states:
Franco Mulakkal was arrested by the police on September 21, 87 days after a complaint was filed against him. It was preceded by three days of grilling by the investigative agencies, and it was followed by a medical examination. The bishop, however, denied all the charges against him and remained elusive and vague during the course of interrogation. The bishop, Franco Mulakkal has been constant in his denial of the rape victim nun's allegations, who accused her of rape between 2014 and 2016.
Prior to this, Pope Francis of Vatican had relieved the Bishop of his duties in Diocese of Jalandhar. This came after the Bishop wrote a letter expressing his intention to temporarily step aside from his duties.