Sonia Gandhi calls children’s torture a ’shame’

February 5th, 2009 - 7:12 pm ICT by IANS  

Sonia GandhiNew Delhi, Feb 5 (IANS) Expressing outrage at the incident of an eight-year-old Dalit girl being brutally beaten by policemen in Uttar Pradesh, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi Thursday said such acts “make our heads hang in shame”. “Though children are god’s gift to the world and despite all laws to protect them, it is sad to note that in India children are still being tortured which makes our head hang in shame. All of us should raise our voices against such horrific incidents,” Gandhi said while giving away the National Child Awards.

In a shocking display of brutality, police in Kailokhar village of Etawah district pulled eight-year-old Komal up by her hair, twisted her ears and rained blows on her inside a police station Monday for an alleged theft.

Six policemen, including a district superintendent of police (DSP), a sub-inspector and a station house officer (SHO), have been punished for beating the girl.

“We have the largest number of children in the world which is around 40 crore (400 million). They will be responsible for the future of the country,” she said.

Gandhi also expressed concern over child labour and stressed for its eradication.

“I am worried that a large number of children instead of going to school are working. Child labour eradication needs more effort,” she said adding that there was also a need to stop female foeticide and child marriages.

Women and Child Development Minister Renuka Chowdhury also appealed to citizens across the country to check incidents of female foeticide.

“Even now we practice female foeticide. If we keep on killing girls then how can we have colour in our society?” she asked.

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