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There can’t be blanket ban: SC lifts stay on Bihar shelter home rape case reporting

New Delhi: There cannot be a blanket ban on media reporting in the Muzaffarpur shelter home sexual abuse case in which several women inmates were allegedly raped and sexually abused, the Supreme Court observed on Thursday.

A bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta vacated the August 23 order of the Patna High Court which had imposed a ban on media reporting about the investigations in the case.

 

The apex court, however, asked both the print and the electronic media not to sensationalise the incidents of sexual abuse and sexual violence.

Over 30 girls were allegedly raped at the centre run by one Brajesh Thakur, the chief of the state-funded NGO. The alleged sexual exploitation of the girls was first highlighted in an audit report submitted by the Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS), Mumbai, to the state’s social welfare department in April. An FIR was lodged against 11 people, including Thakur on May 31. The probe was later taken over by the CBI.

The NGO running the shelter home in Muzaffarpur was blacklisted and the girls were shifted to shelter homes in Patna and Madhubani.

Women staff members of the shelter home and Thakur were among those who were arrested by the local police in connection with the case.

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