Cm Nitish Kumar and deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi had earlier ruled out the resignation of Manju Verma, terming the allegations against her “baseless”.
Patna: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) team probing the sexual abuse of 34 girls in the Muzaffarpur shelter home case on Friday carried out raids at various locations in Bihar including the residential premises of former social welfare minister Manju Verma and the mysterious girl “Madhu” who has been absconding since May 31.
Ms Verma’s husband Chandeshwar Verma and Madhu are being considered crucial links in the case. Both have been absconding ever since their names surfaced in regard to the case.
Ms Verma had to resign earlier this month after call data records (CDR) of her husband revealed that he had spoken with the main accused, Brajesh Thakur, 17 times between January and May.
His name had surfaced for the first time after Sheeba Kumari, the wife of one of the accused who was arrested by the police in connection with the case, claimed that he used to visit the shelter home alone.
Chief minister Nitish Kumar and deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi had earlier ruled out the resignation of Manju Verma, terming the allegations against her “baseless”.
The state government had handed over the case to CBI after Opposition parties started targeting Mr Kumar for his silence on the issue and demanded his resignation on moral grounds. Brajesh Thakur, one of the main accused, was arrested along with ten others in June. The CBI had earlier seized several key documents from the shelter home premises and social welfare department officials.
Sources claim that neighbours of Thakur, during questioning, had earlier told CBI officials about suspicious movements at the shelter home but remained quiet due to his “political clout”.
The police in its initial probe had found that Thakur had handed over the full charge of his NGO Seva Sankalp Evam Vikas Samiti to Madhu, who has been his closest aide since 2001.
Thakur and Madhu were part of the committee that was formed in 2001 for the rehabilitation of women living in red light areas of Muzaffarpur. “Madhu’s arrest is important because she may reveal more facts about the case,” A police officer familiar with the case said.
There could be several others besides Manju Verma’s husband who may have been involved in the case.” A police official familiar with the case said.