New Delhi, March 1: Even as the case is struggling to progress with no arrests after nearly two weeks since three sisters aged 11, nine, and six were raped and murdered in the Bhandara district of Maharashtra, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde heaped more ignominy on the family by naming the victims in his statement in Parliament today.
"It appears that all three (girls) were subjected to sexual abuse before being murdered. The collective conscience of the House, I am sure, is jolted by this," he said in his written statement, circulated among parliamentarians and others, and named the girls in the reply. The identity of sexually assaulted minors has to be protected, according to the law.
When the minister's gaffe was pointed out by Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley, the home minister regretted the error.
The Chair also issued instructions to expunge the names from the records and also issued a directive to the media not to publish the names.
"The in-charge of the police station was suspended for not seriously taking the report of missing girls. Several teams have been formed to pursue different line of investigation," Shinde said in his statement.
Later, External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid informed the House that the home minister has withdrawn that part of his statement which named the victims.
It is a matter of shame that a home minister could let such breach of law happen.
The three sisters, aged between 11 and six, went missing Feb 14, Valentine's Day, after attending school. Two days later, their brutalised bodies were found in a well.