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2-min read

Court Directs CBI to Hand Over Documents to Accused in Muzaffarpur Shelter Home Case

The court passed the order after CBI's special public prosecutor contended that it was not possible to disclose the identities and personal files of the survivors as it contained photographs and information of their current whereabouts.

PTI

Updated:April 2, 2019, 7:13 PM IST
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Court Directs CBI to Hand Over Documents to Accused in Muzaffarpur Shelter Home Case
File photo of main accused in the Muzaffarpur shelter home case, Brajesh Thakur (PTI Photo)
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New Delhi: A Delhi court on Tuesday directed the CBI to provide documents, including a list of survivors, to the accused in the Muzaffarpur shelter home sexual assault case.

Additional Sessions Judge Saurabh Kulshreshtha directed the Cental Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to provide the name of victims, CDs containing information of the case and other relevant documents to the counsels of the accused for their examination and cross-examination.

However, the court asked the probe agency not to reveal photographs of the survivors and their present whereabouts to the defence advocates or the accused.

The court passed the order after CBI's special public prosecutor contended that it was not possible to disclose the identities and personal files of the survivors as it contained photographs and information of their current whereabouts.

The counsel for the accused told the court they required the details for examination of witnesses and would not disclose identities of the survivors to any third person. The court had on March 30 framed various charges, including criminal conspiracy to commit rape and penetrative sexual assault, against 21 accused and put them on trial.

Besides rape and criminal conspiracy, the court also framed charges under various sections of the POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) Act and other charges.

Brajesh Thakur, the alleged mastermind and strongman, was charged with serious charges under the POCSO Act, including Section 6 (aggravated sexual assault).

The offence carries punishment of minimum 10 years and maximum of life imprisonment.

All 21 accused were charged with criminal conspiracy to commit rape and penetrative sexual assault against minors.

The court will hold trial for the offences of rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment, drugging of minors, criminal intimidation among other charges.

Key accused Thakur and employees of his shelter home, as well as Bihar Department of Social Welfare officials were charged with criminal conspiracy, neglect of duty, failure to report assault on the girls.

The charges also included cruelty to child under their authority, punishable under the Juvenile Justice Act.

On February 7, the Supreme Court ordered authorities to transfer the case from Bihar to a Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) court in Saket District Court complex in Delhi, which would conclude the trial within six months by holding, preferably, day-to-day hearings.

Several girls were allegedly raped and sexually abused at an NGO-run shelter home in Muzaffarpur, Bihar. The issue had come to light following a report by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS).
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