Bhopal: 71-year-old ex-armyman sexually assaults differently-abled inmates of shelter-home; arrested
In yet another sinister case, inmates of a private shelter home in Bhopal have alleged the owner sexually abused them. After the allegations, 71-year-old ex-armyman running the establishment was arrested. Three FIRs were registered against him, on the basis of complaints of five inmates- three boys and two girls. The boys alleged sodomy and the girls, rape. The shelter home was meant for differently-abled people.
The allegations leveled by the inmates are shocking. They alleged one boy died after excessive bleeding due to sexual abuse, another died after his head was banged against the wall, and another lost his life from the common cold he caught after spending the night outside. The home that houses 70 students, was registered in 1995 and had been receiving funds since then.
Additional Superintendent of police, Bhopal, Sanjay Sahu said the accused threatened the victims with dire consequences if they spoke. He said the victims are traumatized. They would speak to other inmates to learn if they were also abused. "The retired armyman has been running the hostel for the past 28 years in Bhopal for the students of class 1 to 8," Sahu said.
The accused ran a hostel in Hoshangabad but it was shut down in 2017. A girl from the hostel had alleged she was also sexually harassed. After an investigation, the hostel was blacklisted but no FIR was lodged, revealed Congress media-in-charge Shobha Oza. Reportedly, in the absence of a full-time warden, four teachers looked after the hostel for the last 10 years.
Director of Social Justice Department, Krishna Mohan Tiwari said some students with special needs gave them letters of the assault. "We will write to the collector and senior police officers for further investigation," Tiwari added. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan ordered a probe in all shelter homes and orphanages in the state, last month, probably in the wake of Bihar shelter home horror.