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Monday, Dec 09, 2019

Delhi court likely to pronounce verdict today on Muzaffarpur shelter home case

The shelter home was run by Brajesh Thakur’s state-funded NGO.

india Updated: Nov 14, 2019 01:23 IST
Avinash Kumar
Avinash Kumar
Hindustan Times, Patna
The issue had come to light in February 2018 following a report by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), which had conducted a social audit.
The issue had come to light in February 2018 following a report by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), which had conducted a social audit.(HT file photo)
         

The Saket district court in Delhi is likely to pronounce its judgment on Thursday into the alleged sexual assault on more than 40 minor girls in the infamous Muzaffarpur shelter home case in Bihar over a period of time that sent shockwaves across the counrty.

The shelter home was run by Brajesh Thakur’s state-funded NGO.

The court of additional sessions Judge Saurabh Kulshreshtha, reserved the order after concluding final arguments advanced by the counsel for CBI and various accused persons in the case on September 30.

The court had earlier framed various charges, including criminal conspiracy to commit rape and penetrative sexual assault, against 21 people in the case. Brajesh Thakur, the prime accused in the case, was charged under provisions of the POCSO Act, including Section 6 (aggravated sexual assault).

The offence carries a punishment of a minimum 10 years and maximum of life imprisonment.

The accused include employees of his shelter home and Bihar department of social welfare officials. They have pleaded innocence.

On February 7, the Supreme Court had ordered authorities to transfer the case from Bihar to a Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) court in Saket District Court complex in Delhi.

The apex court had in June granted three months to the CBI to complete the probe in the case, including suspected murders, and had directed it to widen the scope to investigate the “outsiders” involved in the crime.

It had also directed the CBI to probe the allegations of unnatural sexual assault under section 377 of the Indian Penal Code in the Muzaffarpur case. Besides, it had asked the CBI to probe the offences under the Information Technology Act regarding the video recordings of the alleged assault on girls at the shelter home.

The issue had come to light in February 2018 following a report by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), which had conducted a social audit.