first_imgA joint team of the Child Development Project Officer, members of the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) and the police on November 30 raided a shelter home near the district headquarters town of Dhenkanal, where minor girls have complained of repeated sexual abuse.A group of inmates of the shelter home run by Good News India, an NGO, had alleged that Simanchal Nayak, in charge of the home, sexually assaulted minor girls regularly. “Initially, we did not report the incident fearing public humiliation. But when the harassment became unbearable, we were forced to come out in the open,” said an inmate.The shelter home in-charge, however, dismissed the allegation saying the children were levelling baseless allegations as he was strict in enforcing discipline.The CWC found that the shelter home was established in violation of the Juvenile Justice Act. “It has not been registered under the Act. As many as 81 inmates have been given residential accommodation and 47 of them are girls. We are in the process of recording their statements. Our findings will be forwarded to higher officials for action,” Niranjan Mishra, CWC Member, told The Hindu over the phone.“When we first received complaint about harassment, we had issued a show cause notice after paying a visit to the home. Subsequently, a complaint was registered with the Dhenkanal Sadar Police Station,” said Anuradha Goswami, CDPO.Most of the inmates are orphans, brought from Odisha’s backward districts.last_img

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