Special Correspondent

Accused in judicial custody

CBI submits report to Chief Judicial Magistrate

Accused produced before magistrate on Tuesday

Kochi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), on Tuesday, informed P.D. Soman, Chief Judicial Magistrate, Ernakulam, that Sister Abhaya, inhabitant of the Pius X Convent Hostel, Kottayam, was murdered using an axe.

She was hit with the axe (‘kodali’) twice on the back of the head, near the right ear. She then collapsed.

In a report to the Magistrate, the CBI said the investigation revealed that Sister Abhaya woke up on January 27, 1992, the day she was killed, early in the morning, descended the staircase and went to the hostel kitchen for taking drinking water from the fridge. The “accused were found in a compromising position by Sister Abhaya,” the agency said.

After the murder, the first accused, Fr. Thomas Kottur, and the second accused, Fr. Jose Poothrikkayil, assisted by the third accused, Sr. Sephy, lifted Sister Abhaya. The body was taken out of the kitchen and dumped in a well behind the building.

The court, while considering the report, remanded the accused in judicial custody till December 16. The accused were produced before the court as the period of CBI custody expired on Tuesday.

Court’s queries

To the queries of the court, the accused said they were provided food and medicine. They said they were not physically tortured, but were mentally harassed.

They were kept in dark rooms and were not allowed to sleep for three days, the accused said.

Sister Sephy said that she was forcibly subjected to medical examination.

Fr. Jose Poothrikkayil, the second accused, filed a bail petition. The court will take it up on Wednesday.

More In: Today's Paper