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High Court Asks AAP Government To Ensure Safety Of Visually Impaired

New Delhi:  The Delhi High Court today asked the AAP government to ensure safety of children, some of whom were allegedly sexually assaulted by a British national at the National Association for the Blind (NAB) here.

A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar also issued notice to the Delhi government and the police station concerned and sought status report on the issue by September 12.

The bench asked the Delhi State Legal Services Authority (DSLSA) member secretary to immediately look into the matter and place a report before the court regarding disbursement of compensation to victims of the offence.

DLSA Secretary, if required, shall call for inspection of the school and interact with the children, it added.

The bench further directed that the concerned authorities shall “ensure that every step is taken for welfare, security and safety of children”.

The court’s direction came on a social worker Prashant Kumar’s PIL highlighting the absence of due care and framework during appointment of personnel and volunteers at the special home for visually-impaired minor inmates in south Delhi.

Advocate Ajay Verma, appearing for Mr Kumar, alleged that if there would have been a proper mechanism, the incident of sexual offence that has occurred recently at NAB, could have been prevented.

54-year-old Murray Dennis Ward was arrested and remanded to judicial custody in a case of alleged sexual assault on three visually-impaired minor inmates of the special home.

The police has told the trial court that Ward had been associated with the NAB as a regular donor for almost nine years and was a frequent visitor to the institute. He was arrested for allegedly inappropriately touching three NAB inmates on September 2, police has said.

Ward, a native of Gloucestershire in the United Kingdom, had been working with Sterlite Technology Limited in Gurugram till April.

Seeking to prevent such incidents in future, the plea has sought court-monitored investigation by constituting a multi- disciplinary SIT to actively monitor the probe in this case.

It said that there should be time bound investigation to ensure impartiality.

The plea filed by advocate Katyayini also sought protection for witness in the case and said the court should issue direction to formulate regulation for volunteers and donors who visit the special schools.