Tamil Nadu: Ashram turns into torture home; 142 residents rescued
A shelter home in Villupuram, Tamil Nadu, which was supposed to be a place where homeless and distressed people could live with dignity, allegedly turned out to be a house of horrors. A complaint before Madras High Court led to the uncovering of alleged rape and torture incidents at the illegally-run Anbu Jothi Ashram in Villupuram, from which at least 142 inmates were rescued.
US resident's complaint leads to uncovering of alleged torture tales
A US resident Salim Khan's complaint against the ashram led to shocking revelations, according to Times of India. Khan petitioned the Madras High Court after his father-in-law, Jawahirullah, reportedly went missing from the home where he had been admitted in December 2021. Following up on the complaint, police found that inmates had been allegedly raped and tortured at the shelter home for many years.
Survivors narrate years of ordeal, says a rescue group
A survivor who came to Anbu Jothi Ashram as a teenager from Odisha through a "rescue" group said she was repeatedly raped, beaten, and threatened, according to rescue group Social Awareness Society for Youth. "When she tried to resist, the employees set on them two ferocious monkeys the owner kept in a cage," TOI quoted R Lalitha, a volunteer with the group, as saying.
Torture and harassment case filed against ashram owner, 7 others
According to officials, action has been initiated against the shelter home, which has been running illegally for the last 17 years. Meanwhile, police said that they had booked eight persons in the case under Sections 376 (punishment for rape) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Section 4 of the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Woman Act, 1998.
Two accused absconding; owner, his wife hospitalized: Report
Four of the eight accused have been arrested, while the other two have escaped, according to police. Reportedly, the owner of the shelter home and his wife are in the hospital. Police said the home did not keep sufficient records on the inmates or their transfers to other places in Tamil Nadu and other states.
Owner denied allegations of abuse, torture
Meanwhile, the owner of the ashram, B Jubin, who is currently admitted to the Mundiyampakkam Government Medical College Hospital, has denied the allegations. "We admit mentally ill people wandering on the streets. There was no complaint all these years and now we are accused of rape and torturing inmates. It is unfortunate that we face such charges," TOI quoted Jubin as saying.