A 14-year-old boy was allegedly beaten by a shopkeeper, who falsely accused him of stealing a piece of cake. The incident took place in Kollam’s Kottarakara on Thursday evening.
Arjun*, a class 9 student from Kulakkada Government School had gone with his friends to buy a soft drink at Sashidharan’s shop around 4.30pm on Thursday.
Recounting what happened at the shop, Arjun’s mother Savithri* told TNM that his hand had accidentally brushed against a piece of plum cake, which fell to the floor. While Arjun bent over to pick up the cake, his friends left the store after buying their drinks. Leaving the cake back onto the counter, he then ran after his friends, she narrated.
Suspecting him of stealing the cake, Sashidharan then called Arjun back and allegedly beat him up. Savithri alleges that he held Arjun by his collar and threatened to kill him. She also alleged that her son was confined in the shop for more than an hour before she and his teachers found him.
Savithri says, “I was working when I got a call from my mother saying Arjun hasn’t come back from school yet. His friends had told my mother about a shopkeeper misbehaving with him. When I was informed about this I went and searched in all nearby local shops. I couldn’t find him. I went to the school later and along with his teachers started looking for him again. After an hour we finally found him in Sashidharan’s shop.”
When Savithri found Arjun, she says, both his ears were bleeding and he had been brutally beaten up.
“I was horrified to see my son so badly beaten up. Both his ears were bleeding. Sashidharan had thrown his bag out and emptied it. He couldn’t find the cake he was looking for. He had beaten my child in his head, held him by his collar. There are bruises around his neck. He threatened him to kill him,” she alleges.
Arjun is presently being treated in hospital.
Sashidharan, who is also a retired police driver, was arrested on Friday. He was booked under IPC sections 341 (wrongful restraint), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), and 506 (criminal intimidation).
He was, however, reportedly granted bail the same day.
“The police arrested him on Friday around 4 pm. In about 45 minutes, the person who beat my child walked out free. How can the police give him bail? I will register a case against all the police who gave Sashidharan bail,” says Arjun’s mother, who promised to fight until she got justice for her son.