September 26, 2017
Chennai : The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has asked the Tamil Nadu Government to file a case against those who forced 20 children to pierce their cheeks with steel rods as part of a ritual for speedy recovery of the then ailing Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.
The commission in its notice issued on Tuesday directed the Additional Commissioner of Police in North Chennai to register a case under various sections of the penal code and the Juvenile Justice Act against those who were part of the cruelty against the children.
Also, in four weeks, the ACP has to submit the action taken report. Also the police officials present at the venue who failed to check the cruelty should not be spared, the commission said.
The Home Secretary has to submit a report on action initiated to put an end to such rituals. The orders were passed, following the Police Commissioner admitting that such an event took place on October, 3, 2016.
The children pierced with the steel rods had to walk to Seniamman temple in Tondiarpet from Murgan Temple in RK Nagar. They were accompanied by supporters of the AIADMK.The Commission had sought a report from authorities on November 7. It said the evidence provided, including the photographs made it evident that the children “were very small and innocent and their cheeks were forcibly pierced”.
Their caps had the slogan ‘long live Amma’.
The Police Commissioner’s report claimed that parents of the children had given approval. However, he admitted that the incident was a gross violation of child Rights and police personnel on duty there had been given warning.
But the commission said a warning to the erring police officials was not enough given the seriousness of their lapse. Also consent of parents could not justify the crime.