Shel­ter home head, brother and aide held in MP


THE 70-year-old shel­ter home head and two oth­ers were ar­rested on Satur­day in con­nec­tion with the sex­ual abuse of speech and hear­ing im­paired in­mates at two orphanages.

Or­phan­age head MP Awasthi, his brother Vi­jay and an­other aide Rakesh were taken into cus­tody af­ter three cases were lodged against them.

“Two cases have been lodged un­der zero at the TT Na­gar po­lice sta­tion. The cases will now be trans­ferred for fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tions to the Hoshangabad dis­trict po­lice and the Kha­juri po­lice sta­tion of Bhopal dis­trict,” DIG Bhopal Dhar­men­dra Choud­hary said. An­other case was lodged at the Kha­juri po­lice sta­tion.

While the two cases were lodged on the com­plaint of two girls and three boys, a case of mo­lesta­tion was reg­is­tered at Kha­juri on the com­plaint of the so­cial wel­fare de­part­ment. “The cases were lodged af­ter state­ments were recorded with the help of an in­ter­preter,” said Choud­hary.

On Satur­day, Mad­hya Pradesh Chief Min­is­ter Shivraj Singh Chouhan as­serted that the cul­prits would be brought un­der the am­bit of the re­cently amended crim­i­nal law stip­u­lat­ing death penalty as max­i­mum pun­ish­ment to those con­victed for rap­ing chil­dren aged up to 12 years. All the five com­plainants were mi­nors when Awasthi al­legedly sex­u­ally abused them.

Awasthi had admit­ted that he had been run­ning the or­phan- ages in Malkhedi (Hoshangabad) and Baira­garh (Bhopal) since 1991 with the ap­proval and sup­port of the so­cial jus­tice de­part­ment.

In­ci­den­tally, the Hooshangabad or­phan­age in­mates had com­plained about their or­deal in the past, but the dis­trict ad­min­is­tra­tion closed the shel­ter home last year in­stead of tak­ing po­lice ac­tion.

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