The 14-year-old girl, who had brought the battered two-year-old baby to AIIMS Trauma Centre on January 18, is not mentally unstable but needs psychological counselling to deal with the abuse she has faced for years, doctors said.
"The girl is in the safe hands of professionals who are well-trained in handling child abuse cases. She is being provided with emotional support to come out of the trauma. She is doing fine," said a source in the Child Welfare Committee, before which the girl was produced after doctors at the trauma centre got suspicious of her claim of being the baby's mother.
The teenager is being counselled by a team of clinical psychologists and social workers at a south Delhi child shelter.
"We assessed her mental state and did not find anything that required psychiatric intervention," said the source.
The investigation has revealed that the girl spent about six years of her childhood in an orphanage, where her father put her after her mother died. He brought her back home after he remarried and the couple would often beat her. She fled the house and came in touch with Rajkumar, who is accused of kidnapping and sexually abusing her.
"She was a lonely child. She has been physically and sexually exploited. All this could have taken a toll and made her lose balance momentarily but we must not forget that she herself brought the baby to the hospital. She could have dumped the baby," added the source.
Psychologists believe traumatised people have peculiar ways of coping with trauma. In the teenager's case, beating the baby could just be that. "A peculiar coping strategy called 'identification with the aggressor', where the victim starts feeling and thinking just like an abuser and tends to get violent," said Dr Pulkit Sharma, psychologist, Vidyasagar Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences.