There is a village in Bihar where parents prefer to get their children trained as professional thieves, pickpockets and gangsters rather than send them to school, say police.
This is the story of Musepur-Jurabganj village under Korha police station in Katihar district, about 200 km from Patna, where expert elders provide training to children in the art of stealing.
"Children are being kept out of schools and are being trained to steal. Only a few children are enrolled in schools," a police official said.
Most people in the village, which has a population of about 4,000, are engaged in the same profession, the officer said.
"People within the age group of 15 to mid 40 are engaged either in theft, pick-pocketing, burglary or looting," the officer added.
A Hindi daily reported that a man named Bhola Yadav is the kingpin of the racket and is instrumental in training the children and sending them to metros and small towns across India.
All the thieves of the village are members of a committee that monitors and manages the daily working of the group.
"It is mandatory to send the collected money back to the village committee because it distributes money and goods to thieves and others engaged in similar professions," the official said.
The committee also hires lawyers to bail the thieves out when they are arrested and charged, the officer said, adding that it also keeps a percentage of the looted money and goods for smooth functioning of the village.