BJP leader arrested for sexual exploitation of minor boys in UP, party expels him
LUCKNOW: A man has been arrested for sexually abusing dozens of minor boys in Jalaun in Uttar Pradesh.
The man, Ram Bihari Rathore, was involved in sodomizing and later blackmailing minors, said police.
After his arrest, more parents have come forward and lodged FIRs against him, as many boys were sexually exploited by him.
According to police sources, Rathore, who belongs to Konch town, used to offer drugged cold drink to minors and would sodomize them. He would record the acts and would use the recording to later blackmail the minors. Besides, he would ask them to bring other boys.
The victims feared that if the video would come out, they would be disgraced. He was earlier a rural revenue official (lekhpal) and had later entered politics. Rathore even became the BJP city chief of Konch. It is learnt that he was involved in sexual exploitation of minors for a long period.
However, after his wife's death last year, his activities got more visible. The police have seized a digital video recorder, laptop, cell phone and hundreds of pornographic videos from the hard drive. Over 30 boys who have been sexually abused are known till now. The police said that investigation is on.
Multiple cases have been registered and more complaints are surfacing after his arrest. Rathore has been booked under 328, 377, 506, apart from sections under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) and Information Technology (IT) Act. He is being interrogated.
This is not the first such incident. Sexual abuse of minors, especially, boys is a topic that doesn't get much attention, however, incidents are reported quite often. Earlier, a junior engineer in UP's Chitrakoot was arrested by CBI for sodomizing dozens of minors and selling the videos on dark sites.
The safety of minor boys is generally not taken too seriously. There is a strange sense of masculinity, which even boys from a young age, have in society, and hence they are unable to muster courage, due to embarrassment and unable to tell elders about such incidents.
Unlike girls, if boys are taken to someone's house, it doesn't arouse much suspicion. Rather than perpetrator, the victim feels shame. Also, it is considered rare though reality is that minor boys face sexual harassment and exploitation. The sense of shame makes it difficult for children to confide. They feel that elders may not believe them and as a result the harassment continues. There is a need for sensitization and this issue needs attention.