New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday asked for a status report from the Kerala government on the investigation being conducted in the case of alleged rape and molestation of a woman against four Malankara Syrian Orthodox Church priests by August 6.
In the meanwhile, a Bench of Justices AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan extended the stay of arrest of two accused Father Jaise K George and Father Sony Varghese till August 6. The two priests had sought anticipatory bail.
On July 19 the proceedings were held in camera in the chamber of Justice AK Sikri and it was suggested that the order has been reserved. However, on Thursday the Bench listed the matter for further hearing and directed the Kerala government to file a status report.
On behalf of the two priests, it was submitted that it was consensual sex and there was no rape. But the Kerala police contended that it was rape and opposed grant of anticipatory bail when the probe has not been completed.
The four priests Fr. Abraham Varghese (A1); Fr. Job Mathew (A2); Fr. Johnson Mathew (A3) and Fr. Jaise K. George (A4) belonging to the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church were booked by the state crime branch for allegedly raping and molesting the woman devotee.