PATNA: A list of 40 phone numbers along with a phone and a sim have been found in possession with Brajesh Thakur, the main accused in the rape of 34 minor girls and who is lodged in Muzaffarpur Central Jail. During simultaneous raids on jails across the state, 12 mobile phones, four chargers, two pendrives and sim cards have been recovered.
The phone with an active sim reveals that Brajesh was in touch with a few people despite being behind the bars. The Central Bureau of Investigation which is probing the case will look into the phone numbers and the sim card.
According to police, the officers spotted Thakur in an area reserved for people coming to meet prisoners lodged in the jail and recovered two hand written pages with 40 mobile phone numbers and the names of those they were issued against. A district administration official said the names of some powerful people, including a minister, were written on two pages recovered from Thakur during the search.
Bihar Police on Saturday conducted raids on over a dozen of jails in the state and recovered objectionable items from prisoners.
Thakur has spent only five days in the Muzaffarpur Central Jail since he was arrested on June 2. "He has been staying in the medical ward of the jail on health grounds and managed to avoid staying in the prisoners ward," the police said.
Meanwhile, after a day-long interrogation, Brajesh's son - Rahul Anand - was released on Saturday. Anand is the publisher and editor of Hindi daily "Pratah Kamal", the office of which is situated within the same premises as the residence and the shelter home which have since been sealed.
A CBI team had on Saturday visited Brajesh's residence from where he ran the shelter home and conducted a thorough search with help from forensic experts, sifted through documents and interrogated people close to him. Headed by Central Bureau of Investigation DIG Abhay Kumar, the team flanked by a number of armed commandoes reached the residence on Sahu Road in Muzaffarpur.
The CBI team is understood to have inspected the shelter home, after getting its seal opened, and collected documents and other items it found to be of value in the investigation.
CBI sleuths, accompanied by forensic experts, also inspected the courtyard, which was dug up last month by the police, following allegations by inmates that one of the girls was beaten to death by staff members of the shelter home a few years ago and her body was buried at the spot. Nothing incriminating was found after the day-long excavation and the eight-feet-deep pit was again filled up.
However, the CBI appeared to be in for a second look as heavy earth mover machines have been summoned.
The possibility of sexual exploitation of the girls at the shelter was first highlighted in an audit report by Tata Institute of Social Sciences, submitted to the state social welfare department in April. Medical examination of the girls later confirmed that 34, of the total 42, were sexually abused. The FIR in the case was registered on May 31 against 11 people, including Thakur. On July 26, the Bihar government recommended a CBI inquiry in the matter.