KENDRAPARA: Police on Saturday arrested a 60-year-old man on charges of sexually exploiting a woman employee of a government-funded child care institute (CCI) at Patalipanka village in Marshaghai here.
Earlier on April 5, chairperson of Odisha State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (OSCPCR) Sandhyabati Pradhan had launched an investigation into the alleged sexual exploitation of the woman employee in the CCI run by NGO Luthern Mahila Samiti. The accused, Kunjabihari Das of Kiarabanka, was working as a house father in the NGO since 2015.
In a petition to the OSCPCR last month, secretary of the organisation Minarani Bhuyan had alleged that a 35-year-old lady employee was being repeatedly raped by two persons including brother of the president of the NGO for the last four years. The victim even gave birth to a child in 2018. After investigation, OSCPCR chairperson directed police to take legal action against the accused. Acting on the order, police started investigation and found that the victim was raped several times and impregnated by accused Kunjabihari. She gave birth to a child in April 2016.
Later, she was also allegedly raped by Jagannath Tripathy, brother of NGO president Pramila Tripathy, following which she delivered another baby in 2018. The husband of the victim is languishing in jail since 2014 in a murder case. Marsaghai IIC Kalandi Behera said during investigation, police came to know that Pramila illegally sold both the babies of the victim to two childless couples for adoption without her consent. Police are investigating the case.
“We arrested Kunjabihari under section 376 of IPC. The other accused Tripathy managed to flee his village. We are raiding several hideouts to nab him. We will file a petition in court to conduct DNA test on the accused to determine the paternity of the child,” the IIC said. The accused was produced in the court and remanded to jail custody.