A medical officer and a male staff nurse of the government-run Observation Home for Boys-2 at Kingsway Camp here have been accused of humiliating minor inmates by stripping them during medical examination and physically assaulting them. Taking cognisance of the allegations, a Juvenile Justice Board has ordered registration of a First Information Report against the duo.
The shocking instance came to light when the Board received complaints from some inmates alleging that they were humiliated by the medical officer and the nurse. They alleged that they were stripped, forced to kneel down and touch their toes and beaten up for denying any history of drug addiction.
The Board observed that the boys were allegedly made to stand naked in the presence of the nurse and in some cases in the presence of co-inmates. In one case, a boy who was slapped by the duo had sustained injuries near the eye as his head hit a table.
During a hearing on October 30, both the doctor and the nurse denied the allegations. They claimed that they had asked the children to remove their clothes as required for a thorough medical examination. However, the JJB took objections to the manner in which the medical examination was carried out. It observed that making children strip in the presence of others was violative of their right to privacy and dignity.
The Board observed that the versions of maltreatment as given by five children were consistent and that there was no reason to disbelieve them. It said a cognisable offence under Section 23 of the Juvenile Justice Act (punishment for cruelty to juvenile or child) was made out and directed the Special Juvenile Police Unit to register an FIR against both of the accused under Section 23 of the Act and other relevant provisions of the Indian Penal Code. It also sought a compliance report within five days.