UP, Bihar shelter home cases rock Parliament

UP, Bihar shelter home cases rock Parliament

With opposition parties raising serious concern over the alleged sexual exploitation of girls at a children's shelter home in Uttar Pradesh, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday termed the incident shameful and declared that no culprit would escape acti

Deoria shelter home scandal in Uttar Pradesh (UP) and Muzaffarpur shelter home mass rape case in Bihar rocked Parliament on Tuesday.

While Samajwadi Party (SP) member Dharmendra Yadav raised the issue in the Lok Sabha to corner UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, the Congress and other Opposition parties joined Yadav and demanded a nationwide inquiry into the functioning of the shelter homes and a probe into the cases of sexual exploitation at shelter homes that has surfaced in UP and Bihar.

Senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge urged Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to set up a parliamentary committee for conducting a probe into the shelter home scandal in Deoria district of Uttar Pradesh and mass rape case in a shelter home in Muzaffarpur district of Bihar.

“I am not asking for a probe into UP and Bihar only. An inquiry should be conducted all over the country. You (Lok Sabha Speaker) set up a parliamentary committee for this,” Kharge demanded.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh, while responding to the Opposition's concerns and demands, defended the UP government, saying it has taken a "swift action" in the case by “immediately” suspending the district planning officer and also by assigning the investigation to additional chief secretary and the additional director general of police of the state.

Director of Deoria shelter home (Girija Tripathi) and her husband have also been arrested by the UP police in connection with the case, he said.

“It's an unfortunate incident. But I would like to congratulate Yogi Adityanath ji. He immediately called a meeting of the officials and assigned them tasks,” Singh said.

Singh also assured the members that culprits in the Deoria shelter home case will not be spread, saying he would ask the other Union ministries concerned to send advisories to the states to ensure that such incidents do not occur in the future.

The Opposition parties, however, remained dissatisfied with the home minister's response.

“We are boycotting,” Yadav said before he and his party members along with those of the Congress, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and Trinamool Congress (TMC) staged a walkout.

In the Rajya Sabha, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) member Sanjay Singh and those of the SP raised the issue soon after the House assembled for the day and mourned the death of veteran Congress leader R K Dhawan.

The Opposition members wanted the Chair to set aside the scheduled proceedings of the House and take up the issue of sexual exploitation at shelter homes for discussion under a rule.

However, Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu refused to accept their demand and adjourned the proceedings for about 40 minutes as the Opposition members refused to relent.