New Delhi: Taking cognizance of media reports that 57 minor girls tested positive for COVID-19 with a few of them found to be pregnant at a state-run children’s shelter home in Uttar Pradesh’s Kanpur, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Monday (June 22) issued notice to the Chief Secretary and Director General of Police (DGP) Uttar Pradesh.

The panel called for a detailed report in the matter including the health status of all the girls, their medical treatment and counselling provided to them by the authorities. The NHRC said that the Uttar Pradesh government is also expected to order an inquiry into the matter from an independent agency, besides calling for a report regarding registration of FIR in this matter and status of the investigation.

The panel directed both the Uttar Pradesh government and the DGP to submit their reports within 4 weeks. 

At least 57 girls at a children’s shelter home in Kanpur tested positive for the infection with five of them found to be pregnant. Two other girls at the shelter home, who were found to be COVID-19, were also found to be pregnant.

The five pregnant girls, who have been found COVID-19 positive, were referred by the Child Welfare Committees of Agra, Etah, Kannauj, Firozabad and Kanpur under the POCSO Act. Kanpur DM Brahma Dev Ram Tiwari told reporters that all seven girls were pregnant at time, when they came to the shelter home. 

The district magistrate added that two girls are undergoing treatment at LLR Hospital in Kanpur, while three others are undergoing treatment at private hospital.

In a Facebook post, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra attacked the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh over the media reports about the girls being found pregnant at the shelter home. “The entire story of the Muzaffarpur shelter home case is in front of the country. Such a case had also come to light in Deoria in UP,” she wrote in the post.

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