Police probing shelter for girls in UP over trafficking

UP 24 girls rescued from Deoria shelter home director arrested

Last month, 11 employees of the shelter home were arrested and 44 girls were rescued. She reached a woman police station and informed them about the plight of the inmates. "The probe team will talk to inmates and take into account their ordeal while preparing the report", she said.

The CBI, however, stated that it has not carried out any investigation into cases of sexual assault.

Taking a serious note of the matter, chief minister Yogi Adityanath ordered immediate removal of Deoria district magistrate Sujit Kumar, UP minister for women and child welfare Rita Bahuguna Joshi told reporters in Lucknow.

How did Deoria police get to know?

The government had revoked the shelter's license for Mohan and Girija Tripathi, a husband and wife duo who operated the shelter in Deoria city, back in 2017, but the couple continued to run it illegally, police said. Party chief Akhilesh Yadav said after Muzaffarpur in Bihar, reports of sexual exploitation of women inmates of a shelter home in Deoira only explain that the promise of women safety is only a slogan for the BJP. The girls would return to the facility crying.

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The police found out about the matter when a ten-year-old who was living at the shelter managed to escape and tell the police about what was happening.

While the investigation is underway, Kanay told News18, "The names of 42 girls are registered in the list of NGO named Vindhyavashini Women and Girl Child Protection House, but only 24 girls were found on the spot in the raid". The attempts are on to trace remaining ones. He also announced the decision of phasing out the practice of running shelter homes through NGOs and said that gradually the state government would take over such centres.

A bench of Justice Madan B Lokur, Justice Deepak Gupta and Justice KM Joseph was hearing the case wherein the SC had on August 2 taken suo motu cognizance of the incident in the shelter home run by an NGO and issued notices to the Bihar government and the Union Ministry of Women and Child Development.

Over 30 girls were allegedly raped at the shelter home run by Brajesh Thakur, the chief of the state-funded NGO.

The bench had said that it had not restrained the police authority from conducting probe and if they want to question the alleged victims, they would have to take assistance of professional counsellors and qualified child psychiatrist in consultation with National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro-Sciences in Bengaluru and Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) in Mumbai. "The records and statements of the shelter home operators are contradictory". Joshi said in Lucknow that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) found a year ago that the Deoria shelter home was running illegally and so an FIR was filed on 1 August.

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