On Muzaffarpur Child Rapes, High Court Has Tough Questions For CBI

Questioning the Central Bureau of Investigation why the investigating officer in the Muzaffarpur shelter home case was transferred, the high court said they have to provide "proper justification" for the matter.

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On Muzaffarpur Child Rapes, High Court Has Tough Questions For CBI

CBI officers investigate the Muzaffarpur shelter home where 34 minor girls were allegedly raped


Patna: 

Investigators in the Muzaffarpur child rape cases got pulled up by the Patna High Court on Monday for their choice of a police chief to oversee the case. The court said case cannot be given to an officer who is already in charge of three cities - Lucknow, Patna and Ranchi. In an earlier hearing, the media too was criticized for its coverage and on Monday, the court indicated that it would put down some guidelines on Tuesday.

The horrific sexual exploitation and torture of more than 30 minor girls, which shocked the country, has reached the Supreme Court, which issued notices to the Central and the state governments.

The charge-sheet in the case details a network of police, politicians, administration and criminals behind the racket that has been going on for around four years.

Questioning the Central Bureau of Investigation why the investigating officer in the case was transferred, the high court said they have to provide "proper justification" for the matter.

Why a person holding charge of three cities "should be put in charge of a sensitive case,' the court questioned. When the CBI said there was a shortage of officers of Superintendent of Police rank, the "This case has to be investigated at the earliest... you can post anyone, but he should not be in-charge SP".

The court also called out the media, saying there were concerns about reportage of the case benefitting the accused and that it could impose "reasonable restrictions if required in larger public interest". The court, however, assured the from media that they should "wait for a day, and we will come out with something amicable for this problem".

"I'm not against freedom speech and media... (but) there should be no media trial ... accused should not be benefitted in advance by media reports, which we are apprehensive about," said Chief Justice MR Shah.

The man who ran the shelter home, 55-year-old Brijesh Thakur, has been arrested and chargesheeted along with nine others. Owner of local daily "Pratah Kamal", he was well-known in the corridors of power in Patna. Many have accused him of bribing his way to profit and privileges.



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