Kottayam: The Pala judicial first class magistrate court, which was supposed to refer the case to Kottayam principal sessions court to commence trial on Thursday, adjourned the hearing of the Kerala nun rape case against former bishop Franco Mulakkal to July 9.

Five nuns from a convent in Kottayam Kuravilangadu seminary staged a protest on September 8, last year, in front of the Kochi high court against Mulakkal, who has been accused of raping a Kerala nun multiple times between 2014 and 2016.

The hearing of the case was postponed as Franco Mulakkal's lawyer demanded more documents. The lawyer argued that a few documents handed over by the prosecution were not legible.

The lawyer also demanded the reports of the seven magistrates, who had recorded the statements of the witnesses and those who were arraigned as witnesses in the mahazar report (a report filed by the cops), among others.

Regarding this, the court directed the prosecution to submit the documents before the next hearing on July 9. Special prosecutor in the case Jithesh J Babu, said in the court that the documents, including the affidavit by the investigating officer would be filed by July 7.

If Mulakkal is found guilty, he may get life imprisonment or minimum imprisonment of not less than ten years, say police sources.

Earlier, the nuns of the Missionaries of Jesus congregation protested against the decision to transfer Vaikom deputy superintendent of police (DySP) K Subhash, who investigated the case. Subhash has been transferred to Idukki Vigilance. She also expressed concern over the transfer of  Kottayam district police chief S Harisankar, who supervised the case. He has been shifted as the Kollam Rural SP.