Bihar shelter homes case: SC asks for CBI probe

#dailynews60 November 29: The Supreme Court Wednesday directed the CBI to conduct a probe into the allegations of physical and sexual abuse of inmates in 16 shelter homes in Bihar which were flagged in a report of Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS).

The report had highlighted rampant sexual and physical abuse of inmates in several shelter homes in the state.

A bench of Justices Madan B Lokur, S A Nazeer and Deepak Gupta transferred the investigation being conducted by Bihar Police to CBI and dismissed the state government’s fervent request not to do so and grant them a week to rectify the problems.

The apex court said the report of TISS, which was given to the Bihar government earlier this year, had raised grave concern about 17 shelter homes in Bihar and the CBI must look into all of them.

Out of these, the case of Muzaffarpur shelter home, where several girls were allegedly raped and sexually abused, is already being investigated by the CBI.

At the outset, the CBI’s counsel told the bench that he has taken instructions on whether the agency could probe all these matters.

“The interim director (of CBI) has told me that court number one (of the apex court) has asked him not to take any policy decision. Tomorrow, the CBI case is coming up in court number one,” he said.

The CBI counsel was referring to a separate matter that is pending before a bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, in which CBI Director Alok Kumar Verma has challenged the Centre’s decision to divest him of his duties and sending him on leave.

The bench headed by Justice Gogoi had earlier directed acting CBI Director M Nageswara Rao not to take major policy decisions.

During the hearing on Wednesday, when the CBI’s counsel referred to the order asking acting CBI director not to take any policy decision, Justice Lokur observed, “This does not say that all investigation should stop”.