Mumbai, May 29: A 17-year-old boy, who was arrested for theft, died in a hospital after he was allegedly assaulted brutally at a juvenile remand home in Matunga here.
However, Maharashtra Women and Child Welfare Department has refuted the allegations that the boy, who died yesterday at Nair hospital, was assaulted at the remand home, and has sought details regarding the incident.
Amir Jamal Khan, a resident of suburban Powai, was admitted to Nair hospital on May 24 in a critical condition, police said. He was arrested by Powai police on April 17 for allegedly stealing a woman's purse and then sent in custody to Dongri remand home near Byculla.
After a few days, he was shifted in David Sassoon Remand Home at Matunga. A sub-inspector at Shivaji Park police station said a police team had gone to Nair hospital when the boy was admitted there and recorded his statement in which he named some inmates and a senior official of David Sassoon Juvenile Home at Matunga, who allegedly assaulted, tortured and sodomised him.
Based on the statement, police yesterday registered an FIR against 12 inmates of the remand home. Police have sought permission from the child welfare committee to question them.
"Since they are minors, we have to take prior permission from the child welfare committee and we have approached it in this regard," the official said.
Police have also sought details from doctors at Nair hospital about the victim's injuries which led to his death.
Meanwhile, state Women and Child Welfare Minister Vidya Thakur said, "What initial information I have been given is that the boy was sent in the remand home on April 20 and he was handed over to his parents on May 20. The incident of assault took place few days after he was handed over."
Thakur said she has asked for the details of the boy's custody from the remand home and police officials. "It is a matter of investigation that when and where this boy was assaulted and what was the reason," she said adding that the truth will come out after an inquiry.