Patna: Bihar's chief minister, Nitish Kumar, has ordered an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation into a sex scandal at a shelter. A police report confirmed the rape of 29 girls; 42 lived in the home.
“The state government is committed to an impartial probe into the reprehensible incident at the shelter home for girls and hence, has ordered a CBI probe,” a press statement issued by the state Information and Public Relations Department said on Thursday.
According to the official statement, Kumar has directed the Chief Secretary, Director General of Police (DGP) and Principal Secretary (Home Department) to hand over the case to the CBI.
The order for the CBI inquiry came hours after a delegation led by Tejashwi Yadav, head of the opposition in Bihar assembly, visited the home in Muzaffarpur district on Wednesday to inquire into the scandal. Yadav subsequently accused the stare government of protecting those involved in the incident.
“Nothing less than a CBI probe is acceptable to us. The state government is trying to save the accused persons,” said Yadav.
He said the Patna High Court should supervise the CBI probe. The opposition delegation that visited the shelter comprised Sadanand Singh, Congress Legislature Party leader; Jitan Ram Manjhi, Hindustani Awam Morcha president; Abdul Bari Siddiqui (RJD) and Mehboob Alam of Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist).
The sex scandal rocked both the Bihar state assembly and the Parliament. The proceedings of state assembly have been disrupted due to the issue since the start of monsoon session last week.
The issue also featured prominently in parliament earlier in the week with Manoj Jha and Jayprakash Narayan Yadav of the RJD and Ranjeeta Ranjan of the Congress party raising it.
The sex scandal was exposed after a team from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences conducted an audit of the shelter in February. The police immediately rescued all girls and arrested 10 suspects.