Storm over rape-murders in girls’ home in Bihar

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Patna, July 23 (IANS) The alleged rape-murders of inmates of a girls’ home in Muzaffarpur has triggered a major storm in Bihar with former Chief Minister and RJD leader Rabri Devi on Monday demanding a CBI probe and alleging that the accused had links with the ruling JD-S and government officials.

Muzaffarpur district magistrate Mohd Sohail on Monday said the authorities have started digging work at Balika Grih, a short-stay home for girls.

Muzaffarpur Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Harpreet Kaur said an inmate recorded her statement before a judicial magistrate recently as required under the law.

The SSP said two girls who had alleged that a girl was buried after she was raped and killed were present at the digging site. “It was they (the two girls) who had identified the place at Balika Grih, where a girl is allegedly buried,” Kaur said.

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She said the shelter home had been sealed for over a month after allegations of sexual abuse of the girls came to light during a social audit conducted by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai.

The report of the audit was submitted to the social welfare department, which directed the local officials to lodge a complaint.

According to another official, efforts are on to exhume the bodies of girls who were allegedly killed after being raped and buried there. “The work is being carried out under the supervision of an executive magistrate. The local court had on Saturday allowed the district to carry out the digging,” said an official.

Last week, a medical examination of 44 girls belonging to the home revealed that 21 were raped at Balika Grih. The district police have arrested an official of the home.

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Meanwhile, former Chief Minister and RJD leader Rabri Devi said on Monday that the state government should order a CBI probe into the case.

She alleged the state government led by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar was reluctant to act against the accused. “The government has been moving slow to save some people,who have close connection with the ruling party and the government,” she said.

Rabri Devi is a member of the Bihar Legislative Council.

Earlier, RJD MLAs led by leader of Opposition Tejaswi Yadav staged a sit-in outside the state Assembly demanding a discussion on the Muzaffarpur incident.

–IANS

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