MLA HM Shangpliang (Left) and MLA and chairperson of the committee Ampareen Lyngdoh (Right)

Shillong: The Meghalaya Legislative Assembly Committee on Women Empowerment on Monday asked the Social Welfare Department to submit the status report of the five minors rescued by the police on Friday during a raid in Tura in West Garo Hills district.

The committee has also asked to submit the status report by August 8.

MLA and chairperson of the committee Ampareen Lyngdoh, said, “We have requested the Department of Social Welfare to present a report concerning the status of the minors, who were the victims of the alleged illegalities at the farmhouse.”

Notably, the five minors, including four boys and one girl, were rescued by the West Garo Hills Tura police during a raid on July 22 at Rimpu Bagan Farmhouse, which is owned by Meghalaya’s BJP Vice President Bernard Marak. 

Meanwhile, the Superintendent of Police (SP) of East Jaintia Hills (EJH) informed the committee that since January 26, cases of crimes against women and children, including POCSO, have been registered.

The chairperson has asked the SP to get back to them and give all the details of the 26 cases by August 8.

Expressing concern about teenage pregnancy, Lyngdoh said, “We have requested the police department, social welfare department, Women’s Commission, Child Protection commission to work together aggressively in tackling the rising numbers of teenage pregnancies in several parts of the state.”

MLA HM Shangpliang said that they have asked the State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (SCPCR) to also look into the issue of the drug menace across the state.

The Social Welfare Department also informed the committee of the murder of the two infants that took place on May 30. 

Shangpliang said, “The Department of Social Welfare needs to take care of the mental health of the mother of the infants who were killed. Also, the department has to go into detail and submit a report within one week’s time to this committee as to what steps the government and the department have taken in ensuring better mental health for the mother.” 

Both Lyngdoh and Shangpliang expressed gratitude that the department has been able to process the ex-gratia payment to the family.

The twin murder was one of the incidents that left citizens shocked. The father of the two infants, Joefreeon Jana (28), had taken his children for an evening walk and never returned. Later, the bodies of the two infants were found the next day with their throats slit. The father, who was absconding, was later arrested on May 31 and confessed to the crime.

Also read | Accused of running a brothel, Meghalaya BJP leader flees to Delhi

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