Lucknow, Aug 6 (IANS) The Uttar Pradesh government on Monday transferred the district magistrate of Deoria following reports of an alleged sex racket being run at a shelter home for women in the district, an official said.
In a chilling similarity to the Muzaffarpur shelter home case in Bihar, 24 girls were rescued from the shelter in Deoria late on Sunday after one of them told the police that they were being sexually abused.
Officials told IANS that 18 girls are missing from the privately-run shelter home which earlier got funds from the government, but whose affiliation to the women and child welfare department was cancelled last year after a CBI probe revealed some discrepancies.
The manager of the ‘Ma Vindhyavasini Mahila Prashikshan Evam Samaj Seva Sansthan’ and his wife have been arrested.
Women and Child Welfare Minister Rita Bahuguna Joshi said on Monday that a probe has been ordered.
She said that after a CBI inspection last year, it was discovered that the Deoria shelter home was running illegally. An order was issued to shift the inmates and shut it immediately.
The minister said that on August 1, an FIR was lodged to shut it down after reports of the racket surfaced.
Deoria District Probation Officer (DPO) Abhishek Pandey has also been suspended and action has also been initiated against former DPOs Neeraj Kumar and Anoop Singh.
Chief minister Yogi Adityanath has set up a committee comprising Additional Director General (women helpline) Anju Gupta and additional chief secretary (women’s welfare) Renuka Kumar to immediately visit Deoria and present before the government its interim report by Tuesday.
The Chief Minister has also directed all district magistrates to ensure inspection of children and women shelter homes in their districts and present a report within 12 hours, a government spokesman told IANS.