A private children’s home in Tamil Nadu was shut down by authorities and its directors and others were arrested for sexually abusing minor orphan girls.
According to reports, the Mercy Adaikalapuram Missionary Home in Tiruvannamalai housed 50 minor children, aged between 5 and 17. The director Luban Kumar, his wife Mercy Rani, and her brother Justin Manavalan were arrested and booked under POCSO act. The abuse came to light after Thiruvannamalai district collector received a tip-off that the house was being run illegally and the house was raided.
The director’s family resided in the same building where the children’s home was operating. The victim girls said that Luban used to call them to his room late in the night and sexually abuse them. He threatened the girls not to complain about the same with anyone. When the girls complained about the abuse to Luban’s wife, her brother Justin came to their room and repeatedly thrashed them until they promised that they will not tell it to anyone else.
The district collector said that the children were targeted because they had nowhere to go or complain. He also said that the children’s home lacked basic amenities, the girls had no privacy. The bathrooms in the home had no doors, and the girls had to change in one common hall. In addition to this, they were supervised by a male security guard.
When the children in the home were shifted to a government-run children’s home, three of the girls told the warden that they wanted to talk with the collector privately. That is when the girls narrated their story of sexual abuse and intimidation they faced. They told him that the bathroom stalls originally had doors but Luban had removed them on purpose. His room was attached to the bathroom and he used to see the girls showering through a window.
They also said that the director has installed a CCTV camera in the hall where they were forced to change and he would watch them on the screen in his room. Moreover, the girls were forced to go to his room to give him a massage, where he sexually abused them.
The girls were also made to household chores for the Luban’s family, including scrubbing toilets, cooking and cleaning.
Luban Kumar is a retired teacher who used to teach in Danish Mission Higher Secondary School in Tiruvannamalai. He is also the finance coordinator of Arcot Lutheran Church and the founder of Jeeva Thaneer Ministry.
The accused persons have been arrested by the local police, and the private children’s home was sealed by authorities.