The distress letter that Latika Bansal, a 15-year-old girl from Uttar Pradesh’s Bulandshahr town, wrote to chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and signed off with an appeal for justice in her blood, bore more than the “desired results”.
The chief minister assured Latika and her 11-year-old sister Tanya that the government would not only ensure a fair prosecution in the case of their mother’s murder but would also extend help to them and their caretakers.
“The chief minister saw the bandaged finger from where I drew blood to write the appeal and asked why I did such a thing. I explained that my distress and police inaction forced me to do so,” said Latika while talking to Hindustan Times soon after the family came out of the CM’s residence in the state capital, on Saturday.
The chief minister promised Rs 5 lakh each to the girls, a house and a job for their maternal uncle. He said that the government would also bear the expenses for the treatment of their maternal grandmother who is suffering from cancer.
Latika and Tanya have no immediate family as of now. Their mother is no more and their father is in jail. The girls live with their maternal uncle Tarun Jindal and maternal grandmother Omwati in Devipura locality of Bulandshahr.
Earlier, the Bulandshahr police were asked to bring the family to Lucknow for a meeting with the chief minister.
On August 10, Latika wrote to Yadav, signing off in blood alleging “non-responsive attitude” of the police in connection with her mother’s murder and demanded justice. She posted the letter on Facebook which soon went viral.
Latika said in the letter that her mother was burnt alive in front of their eyes on June 14 only because she could not bear a son.
“You talk about ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ (Save the girl child, educate them) but a daughter was burnt alive in your area just because she had two daughters. And now we are getting life threats and the police are not with us but are helping the accused,” she had written.
‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ is a government campaign that aims at generating awareness on the declining child sex ratio (CSR), education of girls and other issues related to women empowerment.
Latika has accused her father Manoj Bansal and other family members of killing her mother. “They (family members) locked my sister and me and set my mother on fire,” Latika said.
“We are happy that the chief minister responded to the appeal,” Latika said on her way back to Bulandshahr.
“I told the chief minister that I wrote to him in July too. Then, I felt that perhaps my blood on the letter would make him understand my trauma and appeal for justice,” she said.
Though the police arrested Latika’s father a day after the incident and sent him to jail, she said that other members of his family who were named in the FIR should also be arrested.
The UP govt will ensure prosecution in their mother’s case and deliver justice, chief minister Yadav tweeted after the meeting.
In another tweet, he said, “Met with Bansal family and assured UP govt will provide both the girld Rs 5 lakh for education.”
#UPCM @yadavakhilesh also assured that @UPGovt will ensure fair prosecution in their mother’s case & deliver justice
#UPCM @yadavakhilesh met with Bansal family & assured @UPGovt will provide both the girls Rs5 lakh for education.