Parents of a 13-month-old child who miraculously escaped after falling from a moving jeep, have been booked under the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Act by Munnar police in Idukki.
Munnar Station House Officer Santhosh KM told TNM that the parents have been booked under Section 75 of the JJ Act- for whoever having the actual charge of or control over a child, assaults, abandons, abuses, exposes or wilfully neglects the child or causes or procures the child to be assaulted, abandoned, abused, exposed or neglected in a manner likely to cause such child unnecessary mental or physical suffering. They shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years or fine of one lakh rupees or both.
The toddler fell from the jeep while her parents were asleep.
The incident happened on Sunday around 10 pm near Rajamala check post while the jeep was passing through a reserve forest. The child miraculously escaped by crawling to a ticket counter of the Forest department several meters away. The family was on a trip from Palani, Tamil Nadu.
The parents did not realise the child had fallen from the jeep until they were another 45 kilometres away.
The child crawled over to a metal railing. CCTV footage from the check post shows the baby crawling, pausing to take rest and continuing to crawl.
An employee of the Forest department at the check post went nearby to check when he saw something crawling.
The employee, realising that it was a child, alerted higher officials of the department including Munnar Wildlife Warden R Lekshmi. Police immediately alerted all police stations in the region.
The family realised that the child was missing after reaching their house in Kambilikandam, a village in Idukki.
â€œWe have registered an FIR in the incident and will initiate further proceedings," Santhosh said.