In an embarrassing setback for the Ernakulam Child Welfare Committee (CWC), a 60-year-old man was arrested for abusing and raping his adopted teenage daughter leading to her pregnancy. The girl underwent abortion. The CWC found out about the girl’s rape and abortion during a counselling session with her sister.
Police took CG Sasikumar, a native of Koothuparamba in Kannur, and his wife into custody last Saturday. Sasikumar adopted the teenager in 2016. The Ernakulam Child Welfare Committee handed over the teenager to Sasikumar without conducting a background check.
A theatre activist, Sasikumar reportedly gave false information to the CWC. He was living in Koothuparamba under the false pretence of being a veteran soldier. He did not inform the CWC that he was married twice before and had children from his first marriage. His current wife is in custody for concealing information on the girl’s ordeal.
Sasikumar reportedly began torturing and raping the girl since 2017. A medical examination revealed that the girl was sexually abused. The girl became pregnant and underwent abortion. According to locals, Sasikumar would get drunk and beat up his wife and child. What is interesting is that Sasikumar had approached the CWC again saying he was interested in raising another girl.
Meanwhile Health Minister KK Shailaja has sought a report on the incident.
The Kerala government’ Social Justice Department has Foster Care Scheme for children living in care centres. The department provides these children with short-term foster care and has criteria list for selection of families for foster care as a temporary shelter. The Child Protection Officer in every district should conduct detailed background checks of families willing to adopt these children. The CWC will hand over the foster child to the families only after the background checks are conducted.