Delhi HC and Brajesh Thakur
Delhi HC and Brajesh Thakur
Litigation News

Delhi HC issues notice in appeal by Brajesh Thakur against his conviction in Muzaffarpur Shelter Home case

Earlier this year, a Delhi Court had sentenced Thakur to life imprisonment after finding him guilty of rape, gang rape and aggravated penetrative sexual assault of several girls at the shelter home.

Aditi Singh

The Delhi High Court today issued notice in an appeal moved by Brajesh Thakur against his conviction in the Muzaffarpur Shelter Home case. [Brajesh Thakur vs State]

Earlier this year, a Delhi Court had sentenced Thakur to life imprisonment after finding him guilty of rape, gang rape and aggravated penetrative sexual assault of several girls at the shelter home.

Notice to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) was issued by a Division Bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Sanjeev Narula.

Admitting the appeal, the Court directed the CBI to file its status report/ reply in the matter.

Appearing for Thakur, Advocate PK Dubey clarified that a prayer was also made for the suspension of the fine of Rs 32 lakh.

In his appeal before the Court, Thakur has asserted that the trial was conducted in flagrant violation of his right to a free and fair trial. Thakur has stated that the POCSO Act was wrongly invoked in the matter and that all the witnesses in the case were unreliable.

It is also argued that the Trial Court failed to consider the fact that no potency test was conducted on Thakur by the Prosecution, especially when Thakur is more than 50 years of age and suffers from high blood sugar.

The Muzaffarpur Shelter Home case pertains to the rape and sexual abuse of the inmates of a shelter home run by Thakur's NGO, Seva Sankalp Evam Vikas Samiti.

The incident was brought to the notice of the Bihar police after a social audit conducted by a team from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS). The team unearthed mass sexual exploitation among minor inmates of stay homes and shelters in Bihar.

Among them, close to 30 minor girls in a Muzaffarpur shelter home were reported of having suffered sexual abuse.

Subsequently, an FIR was registered based on the TISS report in May 2018. Investigation was subsequently taken over by CBI at the request of the State.

The matter was also dealt by the Supreme Court after it took suo motu cognisance of the matter on a letter highlighting the case. The trial was then transferred from Bihar to a POCSO Court at the Saket Court Complex, New Delhi in 2019.

The appeal has been filed through Advocates Nishaank Mattoo, Anurag Andley, Shreed Krsna.

The matter would be heard next on August 25.

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