New twist to 26-year-old case of nun’s death in Kerala

A CBI court has directed that a former superintendent of police be included as one of the accused

Thiruvananthapuram: The case of the mysterious death of a nun whose body was found within the compound of her own convent in Kerala’s Kottayam district, has been given a fresh twist after more than a quarter century.


A Central Bureau of Investigation court in the state capital has directed that a former superintendent of police, K.T. Michael, who was involved in the preliminary stages of the investigation into Sr Abhaya’s death, be included as one of the accused.

He faces charges of destroying evidence and conspiracy. Sr Abhaya was found dead in the well of the Pius X convent in Kottayam on March 27, 1992.

Initially, the case was investigated by the local police, and then the crime branch of the state police. In 1993, the CBI took over the investigation. Michael had been a superintendent of police with the crime branch when he investigated the case.

Early investigations said that the nun had committed suicide, but the CBI investigation pointed to the likelihood that the nun was murdered.

Michael’s inclusion in the list of the accused extends that list, which presently includes two Catholic priests, Thomas M. Kottoor and Jose Puthrukkayil, and a nun Sr Stephy.

The development follows a petition by public activist, Jomon Puthenpurackal to include those who were involved in destroying evidence in the case in the list of the accused.

The allegation against Michael is about the disappearance of several materials used by the nun that were with the police, which were crucial in the investigation. These included the nun’s robe and her diary. Puthenpurackal alleged that the loss of these materials pointed to a conspiracy to scuttle the investigation.

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