Battered two-year-old girl casts harsh light on India's social system
Fifteen-year-old caregiver accused of inflicting injuries on baby
A horrifying story is emerging from India that casts a very harsh light
on that country's social support systems. A two-year-old baby girl has
been rescued from her 15-year-old female caregiver after suffering
countless human bite marks - inflicted by her caregiver.
A horrifying story is emerging from India that casts a very harsh light on that country's social support systems. A two-year-old baby girl has been rescued from her 15-year-old female caregiver after suffering countless human bite marks - inflicted by her caregiver.
As police hunted for the baby's birthmother Munni, who had been separated from her children, authorities came upon a sordid story about India's treatment of female children.
Doctors have waged a six-week battle to keep the child alive, but they are losing hope she will ever live a normal life after the torture she endured at such a tender age.
The child, identified as Baby Falak is suffering from battered baby syndrome, in which an infant sustains injuries as a result of physical abuse, usually inflicted by an adult caregiver.
Internal injuries, cuts, burns, bruises and broken or fractured bones are all possible signs -- and Baby Falak has suffered it all.
Social workers say she is but one of countless infants who suffer similar trauma and whose stories almost always go unreported. In the first two months of 2012 alone, four baby girls between the ages of two days and six months were found abandoned on trains and roads across Indian cities like Bhopal and Asansol.
Activists claim that while newborn girls live an insecure life and fall prey to atrocities, countless girls in India are eliminated even before they see the light of this world.
"According to the 2011 Census and other national statistics 700,000 girl children are missing at birth (due to termination of pregnancy once a fetus' sex is confirmed) and experts say this may reach the one million mark in this decade if serious effort is not made to reverse or halt it," Akhila Sivadas, executive director of the New Delhi-based Centre for Advocacy and Research says.
Sivadas' remarks come in the wake of a new United Nations study indicating that India is the world's most dangerous place for girl children.
"Sex Differentials in Childhood Mortality," a project of the U.N.'s Department of Economic and Social Affairs reveals that a girl aged between one and five years is 75 percent more likely to die than a boy in India, marking the world's most extreme gender disparity in child mortality.
Global infant and child mortality rates have been on the decline in recent years, with a large portion of the world seeing young girls experiencing higher rates of survival than young boys; India remains the notable exception to this positive trend.
© 2012, Catholic Online. Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: India, child abuse, battery, social system
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