Women held captive, sexually abused over pretext of jobs in Bihar's Muzaffarpur; main accused held from UP

The survivor, in her police complaint, said that the accused had lured as many as 200–250 young women into the racket by promising them jobs.
The image is used for representational purposes only.
The image is used for representational purposes only.Express illustrations

PATNA: A shocking case of racketeering and sexual harassment has come to light in Bihar's Muzaffarpur, where several young women allegedly faced sexual exploitation while being held captive under the false promise of job opportunities.

Based on the statement of a survivor, an FIR had been registered at Ahiyapur police station in Muzaffarpur district, implicating nine individuals.

The main accused was arrested in UP's Gorakhpur on Tuesday for his alleged involvement with the racket.

Confirming the arrest, Muzaffarpur SP Awadhesh Dixit said that the main accused, Tilak Pratap Singh, was apprehended from Gorakhpur and added that the allegations against him were under investigation.

"Tilak Kumar has been arrested by the SIT from Gorakhpur. The survivor in her complaint alleged that Kumar first approached her on social media in June 2022 and asked her to visit Muzaffarpur to get a good job. She also alleged that the accused kept on assaulting her in a room for several months," Dixit said.

Notably, a photograph of Singh with the survivor went viral on social media, with another image showing him brandishing a pistol.

The woman had somehow escaped from the captivity of the accused and took shelter in a Muzaffarpur-based court, as police initially refused to accept her complaint. However, a case was finally registered following the court's intervention.

The woman recounted that Singh had initially contacted her via Facebook, offering a lucrative job opportunity. Upon meeting him, Singh and his associates purportedly provided training on making fraudulent calls.

The accused were associated with a forged marketing firm and fixed targets for her and other girls to make fake calls to young women and offer them lucrative jobs in their forged firm. She added that the accused targeted young women studying in grades 10 and 12.

The survivor, in her police complaint, said that the accused had lured as many as 200–250 young women into the racket by promising them jobs.

The complainant further informed the police that whenever they requested their salaries, the accused attempted to deceive them by claiming that they were now shareholders of the company.

Meanwhile, Deputy SP Vinita Sinha said that police recorded the statements of the complainant and also of other survivors.

Sinha said that the survivor disclosed that the accused first approached her through social media in June 2022 and asked her to visit Muzaffarpur to get a good job.

Victims were kept in an undisclosed location and all were forced to make calls. They were also given targets and if they failed to meet them, they were beaten and sexually abused, the DSP added.

Police officials disclosed that the complainant and other victims had also been coerced into marriages and misled into undergoing abortions.

DSP Sinha said that a special investigation team has been constituted to arrest all the accused as soon as possible.

The jobs scandal has once again brought Muzaffarpur into focus. Earlier, it had hit the headlines for sexual abuse of minor girls at a shelter home. The main accused in the case, Brajesh Thakur, is languishing in jail.

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