The allegations came to light weeks after the government took over both the Aluva and Nedumbassery centre of Janaseva Shishubhavan.

Children at unauthorised Kerala orphanage were sexually abused says govtImage for representation only
news Crime Thursday, June 21, 2018 - 18:34

Children housed at Ernakulam district’s Janaseva Shishubhavan orphanage run by Jose Maveli, were sexually abused and suffered physical torture, said the Kerala state government.

The government brought the allegations before the High Court on Wednesday and further added that four children had also gone missing from the orphanage.

These incidents were highlighted weeks after the government took over both the centres - one in Aluva and the other in Nedumbassery, after allegations of irregularities arose.

According to the report submitted by the Social Justice Department and prepared by Child Protection Officer Manjeri, an employee at the centre named Vishnu, used to take the children to his room and forcefully show them pornographic content.

Media reports stated that Vishnu beat up the children if they refused to go to his room and follow his instructions to 'imitate' what they had been shown. The report submitted to the court also elaborated several other violations, including the staff members beating up the children and forcing them to take bath in the open.

The government took over both the centres earlier in May, after allegations of several violations came to light. Although Jose Maveli argues that the centre has requisite permissions, the government has reiterated that the centre did not procure necessary license stipulated under the JJ Act. While the orphanage claimed to have 104 children, an inspection by the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) found only 42 children. Many of them were found to be children from other states, who have now been asked to be repatriated to their own states.

The CWC had found that the centre had used children's pictures in notices seeking fund from people, which is a violation according to the JJ Act. The centre faces a number of charges including one under Section 75 of the JJ Act, based on the statement of a child that he had suffered physical torture at the centre. The case was filed at Kuttippuram police station.

Meanwhile, the centre had moved the court seeking to quash the government's decision to take over the centre. However, Biju Prabhakar, the secretary of department of social justice, in a counter affidavit sought for a detailed probe into the alleged irregularities at the centre.

Show us some love and support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.