India is getting digitalized, but poverty is not. When the whole country is changing their profile picture in Facebook to support Digital India, none raised hand against or questioned the recent child maid abuse in Kolkata, not even the cops. Last Wednesday it was reported by Children Welfare Society of West Bengal, Police from Phoolbagan Thana, Kolkata called their office to inform them about a 13 year abused child maid, who has been rescued from a flat on Ramkrishna Samadhi road. But after 3 days, members of Children Welfare Society had been shocked to see the girl’s health condition.
According to the victim, she used to live in Canning. Due to poverty and financial problems, she was forced to work as a servant for a middle class husband wife family from few years. From the time she worked there she was never given any permission to go home. Most of the times she was hungry, as barely they fed her. She received no pay and was regularly beaten. Her face and neck was burnt, and black spots of beating were found everywhere on her hands and legs, when she was seen in the hospital.
The employer family, owner of that flat has escaped and are still absconding. Children Welfare Committee is blaming on police of Phoolbagan Thana that after seeing this entire incident they did not file any FIR. A member of government sector for children welfare told, “It is needed to investigate the matter under Juvenile Justice Act of India but police did nothing but rescued the girl and call Child Welfare Committee. However, 3 days passed, they have not arrested anyone. So the family got chance to escape”.
According to Children Law there should always be a Juvenile Act experienced Police officer to investigate about children abuse. In case of his absence, the case will go “Child Friendly Thana”. But Phoolbagan Thana did not take such actions for their lack of awareness.
That member of Child Welfare Committee also informed of recent records of children maid and abuse has increased unfortunately. A child friendly Thana has been established in every zone to help abused and tortured children, but the local police was unaware of the same and were not ready to digest even after repeated attempts by Children Welfare Committee. The Police have however denied all these charges against them.
But the disheartening thing is abuse of children brutally and keeping minor child as maid servants. These things are increasing in liberal society. Records say maximum maids in cities are found to be minors.
The International Labour Organization estimates that there are at least four million domestic servants in India, including about 100,000 children working in and around Delhi. While it has been illegal to employ anyone under the age of 14 since 2006, that has done little to hinder the placement agencies which routinely hire out trafficked children.
This is very depressing when PM Narendra Modi is continuously telling about “Beti Bachau Beti Padhau” and Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamata Bannerjee started “Konnasri Prokolpo” for girl education still minor girls are working as maid for poverty. Children Welfare Committee admits this condition and tries to take more action about it.
The girl is now under treatment in a hospital and told that she doesn’t wants to go back there again. Police is trying to find flat owner and the family. Investigation is going on.