The Dharavi police on Monday arrested a 35-year-old woman for allegedly beating up her three-year-old daughter, who had to be admitted to the hospital for the injuries she sustained.
Eyes swollen from the beating she had endured, three-year-old Sunita wandered, crying, into a neighbour’s house at Shatabdi Nagar on Saturday.
The neighbor informed an NGO about her. The NGO took her to the hospital and told the police about the incident.
“She had injury marks all over her body and her private parts,” said Roshan Shaikh, a member of the Pragati Mahila Seva Mandal, the Dharavi-based NGO. When asked who beat her up, Sunita said: “Mummy ne mara [My mother beat me up]”. She did not say anything else, Shaikh said. Police said the mother, Jayshree Shivacharan, who sells hair clips, allegedly locked up the girl at home and beat her up.
After finding out about the beating, neighbours took the girl’s mother to the police station. “We have arrested Shivacharan on charges of causing hurt and wrongful confinement,” said sub-inspector Vijay Ambarge of the Dharavi police. The police have sent the girl to Sion hospital for a medical test, to establish if the she had been beaten up before.
The girl is yet to say why she was beaten up. “All she says is that her mother beat her,” said Ambarge. The mother claimed she had given her daughter a ‘mild’ beating for urinating in the house instead of the toilet, but insisted that she had not caused Sunita's grievous injuries, and did not know who had assaulted her daughter, said Ambarge. Jayashree’s husband Shanker, who is a mason, is also missing. “It is suspicious that he is missing as there is a case against his wife,” said Ambarge.
When asked about the injuries to the child's private parts, Ambarge said, “We are waiting for the medical report. depending on which further sections may be applied against the mother.” One of the accused’s neighbours claimed that Sunita was adopted, said Shaikh. When asked about this Ambarge said, “There is no reason so far to suspect Sunita is not their biological daughter. Investigations are on.”