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Last Updated Sunday September 15 2019 08:51 PM IST

Kottiyoor rape: Kerala govt disbands Wayanad child welfare committee

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Kottiyoor rape: Kerala govt disbands Wayanad child welfare committee Police officials escort priest Robin Vadakkumcherry (C) after his arrest. Photo: Getty Images/File

Kannur: Intervening in the Kottiyoor rape case where a Christian priest was arrested for raping a minor girl, the Kerala government Monday disbanded the child welfare committee (CWC) of Wayanad district.

The government also removed CWC's Wayanad chairman Thomas Joseph Therakom, a priest; and committee member Dr Betty Jose, a nun; from their positions. The other 3 members were kept aside as the government disbanded the panel.

The Kozhikode CWC has been given the additional charge of Wayanad CWC.

Father Thomas Joseph Therakom and sister Betty Jose are among others who are accused of covering up the rape incident. When the impregnated minor girl gave a birth to a baby boy, the newborn was taken to an orphanage in Vythiri, Wayanad.

Also read: Temple priest held for rape of elderly woman in Idukki

Rape of minor: cops on the lookout for another priest

Keralite priest committed a grave mistake, Church will not protect culprits: Cardinal Alencherry

The orphanage had recently stated in a press release that they had informed the Wayanad CWC about the newborn on February 8 itself, the day the child was admitted there.

The officials of the orphanage alleged that the Wayanad CWC did not take any action even though they informed Betty Jose about the infant's admission over the phone.

On the other hand, police are in the lookout to trace seven absconding accused, including five nuns and a doctor, who are on the run since the arrest of Robin Vadakkumcherry, the Catholic priest accused of raping a minor girl. Four of them applied for anticipatory bail Monday.

Therakom and Betty are also absconding. However, with them removed from the posts, both of them are likely to be named as accused.

Fr Therakom is also accused of helping Fr Robin in his attempt to flee the country. Therakom was removed as the Church spokesperson after the incident.

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