National

ED registers PMLA case in Muzaffarpur shelter matter

New Delhi, Oct 17 : The ED has registered a money laundering case in the Muzzafarpur shelter home matter pertaining to alleged rape of minor girls by officials of the centre, officials said Wednesday.

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They said the central probe agency has filed a case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) taking cognisance of a CBI FIR.

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The Enforcement Directorate, they said, will soon issue summons to the accused including the centre owner Brajesh Thakur.

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It will probe if illegal funds were generated and laundered by this alleged criminal activity, they said.

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

The alleged sexual exploitation of the girls was first highlighted in an audit report submitted by the Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS), Mumbai, to the state’s Social Welfare Department in April.

An FIR was lodged on May 31 against 11 people, including Thakur, the owner of the NGO which ran the government-funded shelter home for destitute girls. The probe was later taken over by the CBI.

In all, sexual abuse of 34 inmates out of 42 was confirmed in their medical examination while two others who were unwell were yet to undergo medical tests.

The TISS audit report stated that many girls at the shelter home had complained of sexual abuse. A special investigation team was formed to probe the complaints.

The NGO running the shelter home in Muzaffarpur was blacklisted and the girls were shifted to shelter homes in Patna and Madhubani.

Women staff members of the shelter home and Thakur, who ran the NGO, were among those who were arrested by the local police in connection with the case.

Credit:PTI

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