Muzaffarpur shelter rapes: Warrant issued against ex-minister Verma

(File Photo)

A non-bailable warrant has been issued against former Social Welfare Minister of Bihar Manju Verma in connection with an Arms Act case.

Manjhaul sub-divisional court issued the warrant against Verma on Wednesday soon after the Supreme Court rapped the Bihar government for not arresting her. A hunt has also been launched to arrest the former minister, who is currently absconding.

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“All the not well in Bihar. A former minister has gone hiding and the state does not know where its former cabinet minister has gone after her (anticipatory) bail plea was rejected,” the bench said while terming it as “strange”. A bench comprising Justices Madan B Lokur, S Abdul Nazeer and Deepak Gupta, had Tuesday pulled up the Bihar Police for not arresting the ex-minister.

Earlier in August, around 50 live cartridges were seized from one of Verma’s residences during a raid, carried out in connection with the shelter home rape case.

Verma had resigned as the Social Welfare Minister of Bihar in August after her husband, Chandrashekhar Verma came under fire for allegedly having links with Brajesh Thakur, the prime accused in the Muzaffarpur shelter home rape case.

The shelter home rape case pertains to the alleged sexual harassment of 44 girls residing at the state-run shelter home which first came to light in an audit report submitted by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) to the state’s social welfare department.

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An FIR was lodged on May 31 against 11 people, including Thakur, who was running the shelter home.

The probe was later taken over by CBI and so far 17 people have been arrested.

The apex court had earlier termed as ‘horrible’ and ‘scary’ details placed before it by CBI about the investigation into the case.

During the hearing on Wednesday, the bench was also informed that the CBI team probing the Muzaffarpur shelter home case has not been changed.

Advocate Aparna Bhat, assisting the court as an amicus curiae in the case, had Tuesday told the bench that she has got information that one of the members of CBI team probing the Muzaffarpur case has been changed despite court’s specific direction that composition of the investigating team be not changed without the leave of court.

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