The Women In Cinema Collective (WCC), on Wednesday, declared solidarity with the Christian nuns who have been protesting against the government and the Church for protecting Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal who is accused of raping a nun.
“The WCC joins the historical protest by the nuns against injustice and misogyny. This is a time when we are witnessing more women who are fearless, invincible and are determined to rise. The time of silence is over,” stated WCC on a Facebook post.
“The WCC stands with every woman who is raising their voice and fighting a lone battle against powerful patriarchal structures in society. We strongly urge the government and the women’s commission to immediately support the women who have shown courage to speak up and fight against those who have misused their power and position to a level of exploitation and abuse,” the post said. Actress-danseuse Rima Kallingal visited the protest venue on Wednesday, extending support to the protesters.
They also condemned PC George, MLA from Poonjar, for slandering the rape survivor. “We strongly condemn P.C.George who has slandered victims time and again and demand swift action against him,” the social media post said.
“At a time when Kerala has shown indomitable spirit during the devastating floods, and at a time when we have seen our nation take extremely progressive steps towards equality by striking off Section 377, giving our dear brothers and sisters from the LGBTQ community the freedom to be, we firmly believe that the true rebuilding of the state should also be the demolition of patriarchal structures and notions that hold us back from being a truly progressive and evolving state,” the post said.
Franco has been accused of raping and having unnatural sex with the nun multiple times between 2014 and 2016. The survivor alleged that the bishop is using political power and money to bury the case. Four other nuns have come in support of the survivor and protested against the government inaction, even as the Missionaries of Jesus Congregation to which the nun belongs, extended support to Franco and accused the survivor of being in a physical relationship with another woman’s husband, and PC George MLA, in a television channel interview, sharply humiliated the nun. The latter had to apologize for his act after nationwide outrage rose against him.
The police has asked Franco Mulakkal to appear before the investigating team on September 19, according to PTI.