The Karnataka State Commission for Protection of Child Rights recorded the statement of the child victims of a brutal assault that was reported on June 30 near Bengaluru.
The children who were stripped, subjected to electric shock and battered were suspected of stealing cash from a Nooruddin, one of the accused.
After hearing the victims and their family members, Kripa Amar Alwa, chairperson, said she has summoned the jurisdictional police to depose before the commission with their report related to the incident.
She also said a notice has been sent to the school from where one of the victims was kidnapped during school hours and has asked the Hoskote police to speed up the investigation and file a report.
Terming this act as barbaric and inhumane, Alva said, "Last month, the children were playing cricket and had jumped into a compound wall of Nooruddin's house to pick the cricket ball that was hit for a boundary.
From them on, Nooruddin’s family had been questioning the children about a theft in its house. Finally on June 30, the children were forcibly taken, stripped and tortured," she said.
Following the incident, a case has been registered against seven persons and they have been arrested. "The accused have been booked under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO Act) 2012 and kidnapping," she said, commenting on the seriousness of the case.
How the victims were picked and tortured:
Azam, 14, a painter, was picked up on his way to work, taken to one of the accused men’s garages and was subjected to electric shock.
A little later, Abdul Mujeeb, also 14, a student of the local KHMS school was kidnapped from school during lunch hours. Mujeeb was observing the Ramzan fast and was in the classroom. A boy was sent to tell him to come out as a teacher was asking for him. As soon as he came out, his mouth was stuffed with cloth and he was taken in a car. He too was taken to the garage.
Later, another victim, Syed Khawaja, 16, who sells cucumbers to support his family, was picked up and he too was taken to same garage. The three boys were then hauled off to a nearby field where they were stripped and beaten.
"We were on fast and were very tired, we begged them to let us go, but they continued their assault. They started with shocks, then stripped and beat us with canes for hours. We had wounds all o ver our body and couldn’t walk. The villagers saw and helped us reach hom,"said Khawaja, one of the victims.
Parents’ emotional outburst
Shamshad Begum, Syed Khawaja’s mother, could not control her tears as the Alva briefed the press about the shameful incident. She said, "There is pressure from some people to withdraw the complaint. One of the arrested persons’ fathers is a member of the mosque committee and he is asking us to take back our complaint."
Mujeeb’s father Abdul Azeez, a daily wage labourer, said, "My son Abdul Mujeeb was kidnapped and tortured, and the people now are asking us to compromise. We want the accused to be punished."
The District Child Protection Officer escorted children and parents to the Child Welfare Committee to get their statements recorded. They were then taken to the Taluk hospital for a health checkup.
Initially, the police had refused to register the case and tried to hush up the incident. Following media reports, the police arrested seven persons who were seen in the video. A sub-inspector, Dayanand and two constables were suspended for dereliction of duty.
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 6:57 PM