By Matters India Reporter
Pathanapuram: The body of a 54-year-old nun belonging to the Malankara Syrian Orthodox Church was found inside a well on September 9 in Kerala, southern India. Police suspect it to be a suicide case.
Sister Susan Mathew was a teacher at St. Stephen’s School in Pathanapuram, a town in Kollam district, about 80 km from Thiruvananthapuram, the state capital.
Around 9 am, workers at the Mount Thabor Convent spotted blood stains near the well and then saw the nun’s body floating in the water, the police told reporters. People in the convent realized it was Sister Mathew’s body after it was fished out by the police and fire force.
Police sources said that the nun’s both wrists had deep cuts.
Blood stains were found inside the nun’s room, columns of the well and nearby premises.
Forensic experts have conducted the inquest. The police have taken case for unnatural death as there was no clarity on whether it is a murder or a suicide.
“The nun was taking treatment for an illness for the past several years. She had consulted the doctor yesterday as well,” said Kollam Rural Superintendent of Police, Ashokan.
He said another nun in the convent had told the police that Sister Mathew was depressed over her sickness. “This morning, the other nuns saw her until 8 am. They asked her if she was coming with them to church, she said no and stayed back at the convent. When the nuns returned from the church, they saw the dead body inside the well,” the police officer narrated.
Sister Susan had been teaching at the school for the past 12 years. Both the school and the convent is run by the Kottayam-headquartered Malankara Syrian Orthodox Church. The cause of the death remains unknown.
Death of Catholic nun Sister Abhaya in 1992 in similar circumstances had become a major controversy that was probed by federal agencies.