In Bihar Shelter Where Girls Were Raped, Cops Dig For ‘Buried Body’

A team of policemen in Bihar has dug up the grounds at a government shelter home where over 40 young girls were allegedly raped, to investigate the allegation that one girl was beaten to death and buried there. Out of the 21 reports of medical examination that have been submitted, rape of 16 girls have been confirmed by doctors, while reports are still not out on the rest of the girls who lived in the horror house in Muzaffarpur.

The girl was killed after a disagreement with the staff, one of the girls has told the police.

The NGO managing the shelter was owned by a local politician, Brajesh Thakur.

An officer in the district administration has been arrested over the sexual assault of the girls at the state-run shelter, which has now been shut.

“We’re waiting for the medical report of the other girls which we will get on Tuesday”, said Ms. Kaur.

All the girls have been shifted to shelters in Madhubani, Patna and Mokama for their safety. “Most of the girls are 7-18 years old,” said Ms. Kaur.

“During our investigation one inmate told us that a girl who was killed after resisting sexual harassment by the staff was buried inside the premises… the spot was identified by her and it was dug up on Monday but nothing has so far been found there,” said the SSP, adding that “the area of excavation might be enlarged.”

Narrating the horrific experience that inmates suffered, he said, “It has emerged that they were subjected to drug injection on daily basis before someone sexually assaulted them. We can clearly see signs of injection wounds. Now they are showing signs of aggressive behavior. Some of them tried to smash their heads against the metal grill. Abnormal behavior include breaking anything they find nearby like electric switchboard.”

Sunil Jha of UNICEF, who spent some time with the victims, said that consistent torture has broken their heart. They lost all hopes of living a normal life. We believe they are showing withdrawal symptoms also as they were subjected to forced drug addiction in the captivity of the NGO.

Their speedy recovery is a prime concern for the authorities as they would need to depose before the court during the trial to be started after filing of the charge sheet.

This story has been updated to reflect that the burn and cut marks on the girls were found during medical examination conducted after police filed a case and not during the social audit conducted by TISS. The error is regretted.

At least 16 girls at a shelter in Muzaffarpur in Bihar were raped, Senior Superintendent of Police Harpreet Kaur told the media on Monday. There were 44 girls living in the home run by an NGO under the supervision of the Social Welfare Department.

In a social audit report prepared by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) in May this year the inmates had narrated their ordeals of sexual exploitation. Later, based on the 100-page TISS report, the Social Welfare Department filed a police complaint which exposed the plight of the girls.

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