NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday harshly criticised the Bihar government for the alleged rapes of minor girls in a Muzaffarpur shelter home run by an NGO, saying, “it seems that these activities are state financed” and adding that women are being raped “left, right and centre” in the country.
The SC bench comprising Justices M B Lokur, Deepak Gupta and K M Joseph expressed grave concern about what’s happening to women in the country. It referred to National Crime Records Bureau data and said that every six hours, a woman is raped in India. The court said 38,947 women were raped in India in 2016.
“What is to be done? Girls and women are getting raped left, right and centre,” the bench said.
The apex court asked the Bihar government to arrest wife of one of the accused in the Muzaffarpur shelter home incident for disclosing the names of alleged minor rape victims by posting their names on her Facebook account. The SC also asked why the credentials of the Muzaffarpur NGO running the shelter home weren’t checked before it was given state funds.
“Who is giving money to the shelter home in the state?” the apex court asked.
A furious SC also slammed the Delhi Commission for Women for what it said is interference in the case, told the body that it is none of its business and refused to hear its plea.
Meanwhile, advocate Aparna Bhat, who was appointed as an amicus curiae in the matter, told the court that no compensation has been paid to the alleged victims of sexual assault at the Muzaffarpur shelter home.
The SC was also told that the Muzaffarpur-based NGO is not the only one which is facing allegation of rape incidents, as the social audit report of NGOs pointed out 15 similar state-funded institutions in Bihar were under scrutiny.
The alleged sexual exploitation of the girls was first highlighted in an audit report submitted by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences in Mumbai to the state’s social welfare department in April. SC says that proper monitoring of NGO run shelter homes must be done on day to day basis and CCTV should be installed to prevent Muzaffarpur like incident.
—With inputs from PTI