Sir, you don’t have any daughter. But I want to ask you would you not have taken any action against anyone in the Muzaffarpur shelter abuse case if, out of those 34 girls, anyone would have been your daughter? Due to this one act of yours, you have lost respect among crores of women and girls in the country,” said Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chief Swati Maliwal in a letter to Bihar Chief Minister.
Maliwal asked the Bihar Chief Minister what steps are being taken by the state government in the interest of the girls of the shelter home. “My team and I are ready to work for the betterment of those girls. Lakhs of people like us in the Country want to help them,” she wrote.
Describing the details of the case, Maliwal said, “The Muzaffarpur shelter home incident has taken away my sleep. The pain of the girls has shamed the people of our country. I know Bihar is not my work area but I am writing to you regarding this being a woman and I hope you would read it.”
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क्या मुख्यमंत्री नीतीश कुमार में दिल्ली महिला आयोग की अध्यक्ष @SwatiJaiHind जी द्वारा लिखे पत्र का जवाब देने की हिम्मत है?
चाचा जी, मुज़फ़्फ़रपुर कांड राष्ट्रीय शर्म का विषय है। ऐसे जघन्य जन बलात्कार कांड पर आपकी आपराधिक चुप्पी सिरहन पैदा करती है।#RashtriyaSharm
Maliwal further said, “A TISS report had reported about this shelter home in April, and I am saddened that the Bihar government did not take any action against it in three months. Rather it gave more projects to the NGO run by the ‘demon’ Brajesh Thakur. You were not seen taking any strong decision even after the media highlighted the whole incident. You just handed over the case to the CBI to get rid of the situation. And this is the reason, we saw a big smile on Brajesh Thakur’s face after his arrest.”
The DCW chief asked many questions to Kumar. “Is the government, which could not do justice with the girls yet, capable of taking care of them now? Are the girls still suffocating in the shelter home or the government is working for their better future? Have they started going to a good school? Are they getting the help of psychiatrists to fight with their appalling past? Is anybody pressuring them to change their statements now? she asked in the letter.
She also urged the chief minister to take strict actions against the culprits. “In 2008 during floods, I had visited Bihar and stayed there for several months. Had heard so much about your good works then. If you consider these girls as your own daughter, take action against those who wronged them and spend all your energies for their well being, then maybe you would be partly saved from the blot.”
Meanwhile, breaking his silence on the incident, Nitish Kumar had on Friday said the incident has shamed the government, adding that those found guilty will be “severely punished”.
“Muzaffarpur mein aisi ghatana ghat gayi ki hum sharamsaar ho gaye. CBI jaanch kar rahi hai, High Court iski monitoring kare (The incident in Muzaffarpur has shamed us. The CBI is investigating it and I want the High Court to monitor it),” he was quoted as saying by ANI. “I would like to assure everyone that no leniency will be shown towards anyone, and all those found guilty will be severely punished.” Read More
Kumar’s statement came a day after the Supreme Court took suo moto cognizance of the allegations. He has faced much criticism over the case.
The Bihar government had filed several cases after a report by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) alleged sexual and physical abuse of inmates at several short stay homes in the state. The gravest case was reported from a home for minors in Muzaffarpur. Medical reports of 29 out of 34 inmates suggested sexual exploitation. At least 10 people have been arrested in connection with this case, including prime accused Brajesh Thakur, who is the owner of the NGO.
The CBI took over the case on July 29 following a recommendation by the state government, which was under attack from the Opposition. On August 2, the Supreme Court took suo motu cognisance of the reported mass exploitation of minor girls and issued notices to the Bihar government and the women and child development ministry.