Murdered nun’s father for probe against Judge Cyriac

via PNS | Kochi published on October 23, 2009

Thomas Aikkarakkunnel, father of murdered Christian nun Sr Abhaya, has petitioned President Pratibha Patil and Chief Justice of India KG Balakrishnan seeking a probe against Supreme Court judge Cyriac Joseph alleging bid to sabotage the sensational murder case by interfering in it.

In the letters he sent to the President and the CJI, Thomas sought an inquiry against Justice Cyriac Joseph or permission to prosecute him for violation of clauses of the Indian Penal Code in the Sr Abhaya murder case.

Justice Cyriac Joseph is a valued member of the mighty Knanaya Catholic Church based in Kottayam, to which Sr Abhaya also belonged. The two senior priests and nun arrested by the CBI as the accused in the case also belonged to this church. The body of Sr Abhaya was found in the well of the St Pius X Convent in Kottayam on the morning of March 27, 1992.

According to Thomas, the Supreme Court judge, when he was Chief Justice of Karnataka, had visited the Central Forensic Sciences Laboratory Bangalore, where the accused and the witnesses in the nun murder case had undergone narco-analysis procedures in November, 2007. According to the CBI, he had also watched the tape of the narco-tests when the probe was going on.

The day after the murder, Justice Cyriac Joseph was Additional Advocate General and he had visited the convent, according to AX Varghese, counsel for Thomas. It clearly showed that the judge had been involved in the conspiracy to hush up the case, and this should be probed, Varghese said. The petition by Thomas alleged that these actions were intended to destroy evidence in the case.

The CBI had quoted Dr S Malini, former assistant director of the Bangalore lab, as saying that Justice Cyriac had watched the tapes of the narco-analysis procedures on the three accused during a visit to the lab on May 24, 2008. This had sparked off a controversy. This had even led to passage of a resolution by the Kozhikode Bar Association against the judge.

After investigations by different agencies into the murder case, the CBI had on November 19 arrested priests Fr Thomas M Kottoor and Fr Jose Puthrukayil and senior nun Sr Sephy, all from the Knanaya Church, as first, second and third accused respectively.

According to the chargesheet filed by the CBI in the court, the three Church personalities had dumped Sr Abhaya in the well of the convent after striking her in the back of the head with a blunt object. The agency said they had resorted to the brutal act after she spotted the priests and Sr Sephy in sexually compromising postures in a room in the back of the convent building at an unearthly hour of the night.

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