57 Minor Girls At Kanpur Shelter Home Contract COVID, 5 Pregnant
The officials claim that the five girls were pregnant before they were admitted to the shelter home in December.
At least 57 minor girls who live in a government-run shelter home in Uttar Pradesh's Kanpur have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, with five among them found pregnant, reported PTI.
An administration official, speaking to ANI, said that two other girls who are also pregnant, tested negative for the virus.
All 57 girls have been shifted to a COVID-19 hospital, while the others in the shelter home, including staff have been quarantined. The shelter home, now a coronavirus hotspot with high caseload, has been sealed.
NHRC Issues Notice to UP Chief Secretary
The National Human Rights India meanwhile, took suo motu cognizance of media reports and issued a notice to the UP Chief Secretary, calling for a detailed report in the matter including health status of all the girls, their medical treatment and counselling provided to the girls by the authorities.
In a statement, the NHRC added, “The State Government is expected to order an inquiry into the matter from an independent agency. It is also expected to review health status of the female inmates lodged in shelter homes, across the state and issue suitable directives that such incidents do not recur in future.”
A notice has also been issued to the Director General of Police, UP seeking a report regarding registration of FIR in the matter and status of the investigation. The NHRC has sought a response within 4 weeks from both the authorities.
Girls Pregnant When Admitted to Shelter Home?
Speaking to NDTV, Kanpur District Magistrate Dr Brahm Dev Tiwari, said that the five girls were pregnant before they were admitted to the shelter home in December.
"They (the five girls) were sent here to this shelter via five child welfare committees in different districts. These are cases under the POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) Act. When they were admitted to the shelter they were already pregnant," Dr Brahm Dev Tiwari, the District Magistrate, said.
Kanpur has more than 400 active coronavirus cases – the second-highest in Uttar Pradesh, following Noida with 577 cases.
(With inputs from NDTV, PTI)
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