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SC raps Bihar govt for funding NGO running Muzaffarpur shelter, says women being raped ‘left, right and centre’

The Supreme court pulled up the Nitish Kumar-led Bihar government for funding the NGO running the shelter home where minors were allegedly raped and sexually abused.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: August 7, 2018 3:41:41 pm
Muzaffarpur shelter home case The Supreme Court, while taking suo moto cognizance of the Muzaffarpur shelter home sexual abuse case last week, had issued notices to the state government and Union Ministry of Women and Child Development.

Voicing concern over the rising incidents of rapes in India, the Supreme Court on Tuesday said women were being raped “left, right and centre” in the country. The top court, referring to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data, said a woman is raped every six hours in the country.

“What is to be done? Girls and women are getting raped left, right and centre,” PTI quoted a bench comprising Justices M B Lokur, Deepak Gupta and K M Joseph as saying. According to NCRB data, 38,947 women were raped in India in 2016.

READ | Muzaffarpur echo in UP’s Deoria: ‘Char baje jaati thi, subah aati thi’

The Supreme Court, while taking suo moto cognizance of the Muzaffarpur shelter home sexual abuse case last week, had issued notices to the state government and Union Ministry of Women and Child Development.

The incident came to light in April following an audit of the shelter home by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), which said many girls had complained of sexual abuse. Till now, the police have arrested 11 people in the case, including the prime accused Brijesh Thakur, who is the owner of NGO Seva Sankalp Evam Vikas Samiti that ran the shelter home. Surprisingly, a month after the TISS report was submitted, the state social welfare department sanctioned another project to the NGO on the same day police lodged an FIR against the outfit.

The apex court also pulled up the Nitish Kumar-led Bihar government for funding the NGO running the shelter home where girls were being allegedly raped and sexually abused. The court also asked: “Who is giving money to the shelter home in the state?” ANI quoted the Bench as saying.

READ | Muzaffarpur shelter home abuse case: Patna High Court to monitor CBI probe

To a question, if the girls got any aid from the government, Advocate Aparna Bhat, who was appointed as an amicus curiae in the matter, told the court that no compensation had been paid to the alleged victims of sexual assaults there.

The Patna High Court has decided to monitor the CBI investigation into the alleged sexual exploitation and abuse of 34 girls at a shelter home in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district. The court also ordered a speedy trial in the case and gave the CBI two weeks time to prepare a report on the case.

Another incident of sexual abuse at a shelter home in Uttar Pradesh’s Deoria came into light after police rescued 24 girls from there on Monday. A couple who were managers at the shelter home and its superintendent have been arrested and investigations into the case are underway.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, speaking in Lok Sabha during the ongoing Monsoon Session, termed the sexual abuse at shelter homes “unfortunate and serious” and said, “No one will be spared.”

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