Five Indian nuns among eight arrested over teenager's rape

Five Indian nuns among eight arrested over teenager's rape March 6, 2017

Father Robin Vadakkumcherry*, above, along with five nuns and two doctors, have been arrested in connection with the rape of a 16-year-old girl.
The vicar at the St Sebastian Catholic Church in Kottiyoor, was allegedly trying to flee India when Kerala police swooped.
According to this report, the eight were arrested on suspicion of covering up the alleged rape. The girl later gave birth to a baby boy in a hospital and the child was shifted to an orphanage controlled by the church.

All the accused face charges under India’s POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences).
During investigation, police found that there was an alleged attempt to cover up the whole incident and bail out the priest.
Though the hospital in  which the baby was born claimed that it was not aware of the rape, police reportedly found out that two doctors and a few staff members knew about the incident.
Two days after the delivery, the baby was discreetly shifted to an orphanage controlled by nuns. The superintendent of the orphanage is also among the accused. Instead of reporting the incident to police, all the accused entered into a conspiracy to hush up the case, police claimed.
Meanwhile, the Mananthawady diocese, under which the accused priest worked, tendered an apology to the girl and her family.
Said Mananthawady Bishop Mar Jose Porunnedam in his apology.

I endure your pain and agony. And I am also in pain … The loss of self-respect and spiritual damage caused to the church by this incident is huge. I don’t know how to pacify the child and her parents. I too join in their tears. I can only apologise to you.

Soon after the incident came to light, the diocese had removed the priest from all posts.
The girl’s mother had filed on a complaint with Childline that the priest had “sexually exploited” her daughter last year. The offence came to light after the girl gave birth to a baby at the hospital in Koothuparamba on February 7.
The Class 11 student was studying in a school in which the priest was also the manager, police said.
Update: A Christian weekly magazine, which is backed by a Catholic Sabha or association, blamed the alleged victim for the abuse and said the priest may have momentarily:

Forgotten his position. 

“Daughter, why did you forget who a priest is?” read an extract in the Sunday Shalom, according to an India Today translation.

He has a human body and has temptations. He may have forgotten his position for a few seconds, my child who has taken the Holy Communion, why didn’t you stop or correct him?

* In other reports the priest is identified as Fr Robin Vadakkancheril.

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  • Daz

    How to apologise properly: a short guide for clerics, politicians and other egotists:

    “I endure your pain and agony. And I am also in pain…,” said Mananthawady bishop Mar Jose Porunnedam in his apology.
    The loss of self-respect and spiritual damage caused to the church by this incident is huge. I don’t know how to pacify the child and her parents. I too join in their tears. I can only apologise to you,” the bishop said.’

  • remigius

    What a most heart-warming apology from the bishop – suggesting that the embarrassment at being caught covering up the rape is as painful as the rape itself.
    The poor man. How does he cope?

  • Prior


  • barriejohn

    Gosh – this is a real shock. I’m sure that it is just an isolated incident!

  • remigius

    “…and the child was shifted to an orphanage controlled by the church.”
    Well at least the child is safe – nothing bad could happen to him in a Catholic church run orphanage.

  • barriejohn

    How about this?
    “I find it impossible to listen to public statements about the deep concern in the Church for the care of those whose lives have been blighted by abuse, yet to watch privately as a congregation in the Vatican refuses to even acknowledge their letters!”

  • Cali Ron

    I’m pretty sure I’ve seen this story before, no wait, the names have changed, different priest sexually abusing a different child. Same as it ever was… In 2012 over 2 million children attended catholic schools in America alone. That’s a lot of deluded parents putting their children needlessly at risk. None are so blind as those who refuse to see.
    Prior: Your comment should be posted over the door to every catholic school classroom.

  • If there were a pattern of clergy rape of children that is then covered up by the church, and if that pattern were long-term and well-documented, why, I don’t know what would happen.
    It wouldn’t be nothing, though. Because that might suggest the church is indifferent to the problem of child rape by clergy. Because that might suggest a certain amount of child sacrifice remains the heart and soul of religion.
    Eternal spitting contempt for all religion.

  • L.Long

    Yes but you all forget he loves him some jesus so his sin (whatever that was) is forgiven. He at least has a solid moral grounding, unlike those filthy satan luvn atheists!!! And where does it say forcing sex on a teenager is a sin? After all their book o’BS states that their ahole gawd even did it!!!!

  • Edwin Salter

    Not only the alleged rapist but also seven significant others. One hopes the police would be as properly energetic if they were Hindi. Christians come under increased pressure in India – hence, perhaps, part of the bishop’s lament at this disgraceful abuse.

  • Broga

    But nothing changes while the gullible still pray and believe priests. What other organisation could get away with this amount of abuse and still keep functioning and having its representatives welcomed on to the BBC.
    Meanwhile these terrible atheists are banned from the dire Thought for the Day and we have a PM enthusiastic about the importance of faith.

  • Barry Duke

    I’ve just learned that the teenage victim has been blamed. See my update of this report.

  • remigius

    So he forgot he was a priest. It’s an easy mistake to make. Maybe he could put a Post-it note on the fridge door to remind himself not to rape children.

  • Stuart H.

    That update doesn’t surprise me in the least. Judging from my experience of a similar case here a few years years back, I’d be willing to bet that the raped girl’s family were “advised” by some helpful church workers not to cooperate with the police, and that now they will be having problems finding employment or housing in the area.

  • Richard Hugunine

    Oh please – can we just burn the Vatican to the ground and have done with this misanthropic religious nonsense?
    And hang the damned priest. Short drop.

  • John

    I blame the parents.
    What were they thinking of, allowing their innocent daughter to be exposed to a risk like this?
    Are they also being prosecuted?
    If they are, it might cause other parents to reflect on the dangers of exposing their children to clerical abuse.