July 21, 2019

ED looking into Bihar shelter home rape case

CBI and Central Forensic Science Laboratory officials at the shelter home, where minor girls were allegedly raped in Muzaffarpur, Bihar on August 11, 2018.The Enforcement Directorate is examining the Muzaffarpur shelter home rape case in Bihar to determine whether a money laundering probe can be initiated into the financial aspect of the alleged crime.

The CBI has taken over the probe into alleged mental, physical and sexual exploitation of at least 34 minor girls at the shelter home. Among the 10 persons earlier arrested by the local police, is main accused Brajesh Thakur.

The Directorate is inquiring into the operations of the NGO, Seva Sankalp Evam Vikas Samiti, which had been running the shelter home since 2013. The agency is also trying to ascertain whether any monetary gains were made by the accused in the process of committing the alleged offences.

It has been alleged that the main accused had managed to get his close relatives to become part of the organisation’s governing body using fraudulent means. However, he was not an office-bearer, but was said to be the patron. The NGO received about ₹36 lakh per annum as government funds for running the shelter.

As the investigations are under way, the NGO’s accounts have been frozen and its governing body members have been directed not to dispose of any of its assets. The organisation has also been blacklisted by the State government.

The CBI’s forensic team has already lifted evidence from the scene of crime, which are being analysed. The agency is also mapping the mobile phone records of accused persons. Statements of the victims are also being examined for more clues.

The case came to light following a study by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, which revealed many cases of sexual abuse of those living in shelters across the State. At the Muzaffarpur shelter, the minor girls were allegedly drugged.

Courtesy: The Hindu

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