Horror shelter boss with friends in high places
When Thakur was arrested, police officer got 'calls from six VIPs'
Muzaffarpur: Brajesh Thakur - the arrested proprietor of an NGO that ran the Bihar government-funded shelter home in Muzaffarpur where at least 34 minor girls were drugged, tortured and raped - rubbed shoulders with the who's who of Bihar, sources said.
In 2005, when Nitish Kumar became chief minister, he had gone to Muzaffarpur to take part in the birthday celebration of Brajesh's son Rahul Anand, the sources said.
They added that when Brajesh was arrested on June 2, a senior police officer had received calls from six past and present Union ministers.
On Wednesday, from another shelter home run by Brajesh's NGO, police seized a photograph of a young Brajesh with RJD chief Lalu Prasad. In Muzaffarpur, it is hard to find people who will speak on record about Brajesh, who designated himself chief functionary of the NGO Seva Sankalp Evam Vikas Samiti that ran Balika Grih.
"It was not a shelter home. It was a horror house," said a person who lives near the Balika Grih.
But Brajesh's daughter Nikita Anand said: "There is a big conspiracy to frame my father in false cases."
Once considered close to erstwhile Bihar People's Party (BBP) founder Anand Mohan, who is now serving a life sentence for the 1994 murder of then Gopalganj district magistrate G. Krishnaiah, Brajesh (55) had unsuccessfully contested the Assembly election from the Kudhani seat in Muzaffarpur district. He first contested in 1995 as a BPP candidate and got only 202 votes, and then in 2000, when the BPP was part of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA).
Brajesh, the sources said, would flaunt his connections with don-turned-politician Anand Mohan, whose wife Lovely Anand was elected as an MP from Vaishali in the 1994 by-election. Anand's name once spelt terror in the Kosi region. In 2011, Brajesh tried his luck in the district board election from Muzaffarpur.
However, he invited the wrath of another don-turned-politician, Shah Alam Shabbu. Alam, a former vice-chairman of the Muzaffarpur district board, deals in real estate and is considered an archrival of Brajesh. Alam was recently released on bail in the Navruna Chakraborty kidnapping and murder case.
Brajesh, the sources said, had fielded his son Rahul in the panchayat samiti election in 2016 but he lost.
"He was recently hobnobbing with the RJD-Congress alliance to get a ticket for the next Assembly election from Kudhani, the constituency he has been nurturing since his father, the late Radha Mohan Thakur, carried out development work through an NGO," a source said. The source added that Brajesh had earlier lobbied some JDU leaders.
Radha Mohan was the chairman of the All India Small and Medium News Papers Society. Brajesh made his son Rahul the editor of a vernacular daily and daughter the editor of an English daily. Brajesh owned an Urdu newspaper, too.
In 2013, Brajesh signed an agreement with the social welfare department to run shelter homes for minor girls and destitute women in Muzaffarpur.