Save this family from episcopal arrogance
Yesterday (26/04/2014) evening myself and my wife went to Thaikkattusery. The rented semi-hut residence of the victim's family was found locked. Nobody was able to tell us where have they gone. The entire Catholic families of the locality were scared to talk to us on the issue. We then visited the adjacent house which is of a Hindu family. They told us that the girl is very smart & brilliant. She frequents their house and is a friend of their daughter. According to them on two occasions Fr. Raju Kokken tried to molest the girl. She was called to his residence in the guise of giving her new apparels for the First Holy Communion. But as the girl was of tender age of 9 she was not able to understand the seriousness. Only on the 3rd occasion she understood that something wrong had taken place. Then she informed her mother who lodged the police complaint. Many in the locality said that the Arch Diocese is trying to influence the family to withdraw the complaint. Many also feel that the accused is being protected by the Arch Diocesan authorities. The Arch Diocese will definitely try to influence the police to foil the police investigation. As this is a case of child abuse Children's Rights Commission as well as Women's Commission should take up the issue suo motu. This should not become another Abhaya Case. If the priest is innocent he should surrender before the law enforcing authorities and prove his innocence. There is no news that photos were recovered from Raju's mobile phone. The girl told her mother that the Vicar had taken her naked photos. The photos may be with him. At present he is absconding. Police should immediately publish the look out notice in the leading news papers and arrest Raju Kokken. I do not think that any girl or for that matter their family will make a false allegation against a very influential Vicar of the powerful Catholic Church without any reason. Human Rights Activists and the Women's Rights Activists should immediately take up the issue and give moral support to the economically backward family who may be tortured by the Diocesan authorities. Pelting stones at the Church is a drama managed by the Diocesan authorities to deviate attention and consolidate Catholics communally. Even if the family withdraws the complaint succumbing to the pressure tactics of the Diocese any third party can take up the issue as the offence of Child abuse is involved. Social organisations and political parties should shed their episcopal phobia and come out to give justice to an innocent family. Save this family from episcopal arrogance. Our silence will create many Salomies.