Bye-bye, Bihar’s house of horrors

Civic body begins demolishing illegally-added part of Muzaffarpur shelter home where 34 girls were raped and sexually abused

By Ramashankar in Patna
  • Published 14.12.18, 12:31 AM
  • Updated 14.12.18, 12:31 AM
  • 2 mins read
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Demolition men: Labourers raze an illegally constructed portion of the Balika Grih in Muzaffarpur on Thursday. Picture by Rajesh Kumar

A five-member team headed by Muzaffarpur municipal corporation executive engineer Suresh Prasad on Thursday started demolishing a portion of the four-storey building in which the state government-funded Balika Grih, a shelter home where 34 girls were raped and sexually abused, was running.

Municipal commissioner Sanjay Dubey said that the members of the team along with labourers reached the premises of the facility around 11.30am. However, the demolition work started around 1 pm when adequate number of police were deployed on the premises.

Dubey said the illegal structure would be demolished manually.

“Since the locality is densely populated and there is not enough space to use bulldozer and other machines, it was decided to carry out the demolition work manually,” Dubey said over phone from Muzaffarpur.

He said it took almost three days to remove furniture and other materials from the building.

No family member of Brajesh Thakur, the main accused in the sexual abuse case and the proprietor of the NGO that ran the shelter home, was present at the spot when the demolition work started. On Tuesday, the civic body’s team had to face stiff resistance from the owner of the building and mother of Brajesh, Manorama Devi.

Brajesh is lodged in Patiala jail in Punjab.

The demolition of the illegally constructed portion of the building is being carried out on the directive of the Supreme Court. On Monday, the apex court had rejected the special leave petition filed on behalf of the owner of the building.

On Wednesday, the CBI, which is probing the sexual abuse case, informed the Supreme Court that it had prepared as many as 21 charge sheets against the accused.

“We are in the process of filing 21 charge sheets,” the CBI reportedly informed the apex court.

The medical examination of the inmates had confirmed the rape of 34 girls at the Balika Grih, located on the Sahu Road in Muzaffarpur town and around 72km north of Patna.

The girls were shifted out from the shelter home after the abuse came to the fore in the social audit by a team of the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (Tiss), Mumbai.

An FIR was lodged with the Muzaffarpur women’s police station on May 31, which led to the arrest of 11 persons, including Brajesh.

The Muzaffarpur shocker has led to the Supreme Court repeatedly castigating the government.

Manju Verma, social welfare minister in Nitish Kumar’s cabinet, had to resign after it was revealed that her husband was in frequent touch with Brajesh over the phone and it was alleged that the minister’s husband was a regular visitor to the shelter home.

Both Manju and her husband later surrendered in court and are in jail.