A few weeks after a video from Malaysia, of a child being mercilessly flogged and slapped by a Tamil woman for spilling food went viral on social media, yet another case of brutality against a child has surfaced in Coimbatore district. Parents of a three-year-old child has alleged that an anganwadi worker at Karumpalayam tied up and assaulted their child with a wooden stick and even forced him to consume chilly powder.
Following a complaint by the boy's parents, who found black bruises all over his body, the police have arrested social worker Mallika for her violent behaviour.
Aswath's father Vijaykumar has been dropping the child off at the Anganwadi centre before he and his wife leave for work, for the past two weeks. According to the police, on Thursday, the boy began crying for his mother and attempted to run out of the centre.
The Anganwadi worker, who was enraged by this, allegedly tied his hands and legs and proceeded to give him a sound thrashing. When the child's grandmother came to pick him up at 12 noon, they sent her away claiming that he was sleeping. When the family finally took the boy back home after a couple of hours later, he suddenly got 'fits'.
"We immediately rushed him to the hospital. That was when we found all these bruises on his body. He had been beaten black and blue like an animal," says Vijaykumar. "Mallika has tied him up and beaten him with a wooden stick. The marks can be seen right from his shoulder to his feet. How can they do this to a child?" he asked.
A complaint was immediately filed at the Sulur police station and the accused Mallika, has been remanded. "The child has definitely been beaten up. But we are still investigating the other allegation," said a police official who spoke to The News Minute. "We have already booked her under section 323 (Punishment for voluntarily causing hurt) of the Indian Penal code," he adds.
The parents of the assaulted child and others who leave their children at the Anganwadi are enraged. "We demand justice for what has been done. This shouldn't happen to anyone else," says Vijaykumar.