Prosecutors in Russia have revealed details of a reclusive Islamic sect in Tartarstan that kept up to 27 children underground in dark unheated cells for years.
They have now been freed and the parents are being charged with child abuse. The sects’ founder 83-year-old Faizrakhman Satarov, who declared himself a Muslim prophet in contradiction of the principles of Islam, is accused of negligence.
Some of the youngsters had never seen daylight according to health officials.
“The room is a cell without natural light or ventilation, in the basement dug out under the building”, said deputy prosecutor Irina Petrova.
Tartartstan police said the compound in the provincial capital Kazan was built illegally and will now be demolished.
The children have been sent to local hospitals for observation and afterwards will be housed temporarily in an orphanage.