RAIPUR: A government employee is under investigation after posting a video on Facebook showing him kissing and biting the cheeks of a three-year-old girl even as she keeps telling him: “Aisa nahin karte.”
Sources said that the child is his niece but child rights activists are horrified by what they see as an offence under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO). The Chhattisgarh Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CCPCR) has started an inquiry and the state woman and child department has asked for details of the man to begin its own investigation.
The video shows the government employee ‘kissing’ the child repeatedly as he takes a video of it, but it looks more like he’s biting her cheeks. The child asks him to kiss “simply”, saying “daddy said it is done this way”, and shows it by innocently kissing him in a simple manner.
After he posted the video on Facebook, a woman brought this to the notice of CCPCR in March this year. The then chairperson Shatabdi Pandey found the video objectionable and promised action. But it appears nothing was done because the man recently updated his profile picture again with the little girl kissing him.
The woman who complained to CCPCR then approached TOI, saying that the child’s parents aren’t on Facebook and aren’t aware that such a video and picture of her is on social media.
Lawyers, too, are outraged. Devarshi Thakur, a high court lawyer based in Raipur, found the video “too disgusting to be ignored”. “When a child can’t differ between a good and bad touch, posting such a video and picture of a minor is a punishable offence under Section 23 of POCSO Act. No child can be videographed or clicked for a social media post. Moreover, the man is seen biting her while she keeps telling him ‘aisa nahi karte hain’,” Thakur said.
M Geetha, secretary of department of women and child development, said she has sought for details of the man so that an enquiry can be done. “Action hadn’t been taken so far because the complainant didn’t have complete information. It will be taken into consideration with complete details of the man,” she said on Friday.
Gautam Bandhyopadhyay, an activist and convener of State Right to Education Act, pointed out that even if the man is a close relative of the child, he should have mentioned his relationship or else people might “confuse his intentions”.
“Both boys and girls are vulnerable. The issue calls for attention because the man in the video not only seems to be abusing the girl but is also sharing the video on social media while the girl is too innocent to understand what is a bad touch,” Gautam said.
Moreover, since he is a government employee, it is also a case of breach of code of conduct for public servants, said an official in General Administration Department.