The Kerala High Court dismissed a petition seeking a police investigation against the head of Syro-Malabar Church Cardinal George Ale0ncherry and three others over alleged irregularities in land deals involving the church, causing huge loss.
Dismissing the petition by one Joshy Varghese, a resident of Perumbavoor in Kochi, Justice B. Kemal Pasha said a private complaint given by the petitioner was pending before a magistrate’s court and that an enquiry was going on.
The petitioner himself had given evidence before the magistrate’s court. Hence, at this stage, the high court could not direct a police probe in the matter, Justice Pasha said.
Two other petitions related to the land deals are pending in the high court.
The petitioners have alleged irregularities in the land deals involving the Ernakulam-Angamaly archdiocese.
The petitions were filed days after a committee of the church, which probed the alleged irregularities in financial and land transactions of the archdiocese, said it had found numerous instances of violation of canon and civil laws and recommended necessary action against those responsible.
The six-member enquiry committee had also said Cardinal Alencherry “seems to have fully known and involved” in the alienation and purchase of lands by the archdiocese between April 1, 2015 and November 30, 2017.
The panel, comprising priests, was appointed by Alencherry after some priests and faithful accused him of having sold prime land of the archdiocese for “a very low price”.