MP govt, samaritans pledge to help minor girl arrested for temple theft
A minor girl in Madhhya Pradesh’s Sagar district who was arrested on Saturday for allegedly stealing Rs 250 from a temple donation box to buy flour for family has found help from samaritans, said police.
The help came within 48 hours of the 12-year-old girl’s arrest on Saturday. She is currently lodged in a juvenile home.
Minister for new and renewable energy Harsh Yadav said on Monday that the government will take care of her education.
“The state government will take care of education of the girl. I will see if the family has a ration card meant for below poverty line (BPL) people and why it doesn’t have a house under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna (PMAY). There should have been a counselling of the girl instead of an FIR and subsequent arrest. Action will be taken against police personnel if lapses are fond on their part,” Yadav.
Ahead of the minister declaring the government’s backing, Rehli sub-divisional officer of police Anurag Pandey had also announced that he would take care of the girl’s educational expenses for his entire life.
“The girl needs support not punishment. She acted very responsibly for her family but she chose a wrong way. We are supporting her to have a better future of her,” he said.
A First Information report (FIR) was registered against the girl for allegedly stealing the money from a temple situated at a hillock at Rehli town in Sagar district on September 21.
The FIR was lodged by the temple committee manager Sushil Sharma on September 22, said police.
According to the police, when the temple premises’ CCTV footage were examined they saw the girl who live about 1.5 km from the temple commit the theft.
After her arrest on Saturday the girl was produced before a juvenile board and later sent to a juvenile home for girls.
When the police personnel of Rehli police station came to know about the reason behind the theft and saw the poor financial condition of the family, they decided to help her.
Satyendra Yadav, town inspector at Rehli police station said, “The girl’s father works as a labourer. After death of her mother, three years ago, the girl, who is the eldest child in the family started taking care of all household chores and her younger brother and sister at home. Her father told us that he had sent her to a flour mill with 10 kg of wheat but she lost the bag somewhere. She thought she would be punished at home and thus she stole Rs 250 from the temple donation box to purchase 10 kg flour from the mill.”
“When we arrested the girl, she told us that she purchased 10 kg wheat for Rs 180 and remaining Rs 70 was still with her. She studies in class 6 and wants to continue her study. The financial condition of the family is very bad. They live in a thatched house. That’s why we decided to help her,” Yadav said.
Two local advocates Shashank Guru and Chandrashekhar Pandey helped the girl’s father in getting bail for her. Guru said they did it not charge any fees from him to help the family. Pandey said the girl might be released on Tuesday after the juvenile home receives the order.