It is a case which has shocked and moved Kerala in equal parts. A small child, mercilessly battered by his mother's partner, his 4-year-old sibling stepping up to reveal to the police the extent of the crime. And now, despite fervent prayers, the 7-year-old victim has passed away in Kerala. His cruel fate has plunged the state in sorrow. The young child had battled for his life in the ICU for nine long days, but in the end, it was not to be.
The boy was on life support at the Kolanchery Medical College after sustaining critical head injury which led to the blood supply to his brain being cut off. His death was confirmed by the medical board at 11:30 am on Saturday.
"There were fluctuations in his blood pressure level since Friday evening. On Saturday morning his heart beat and blood pressure level was fluctuating. He was being constantly monitored, but by 11 his condition became worse. The death happened at 11.30 am," Dr Subin Francis, Assistant Professor (Forensics) from the Kolanchery Medical College told TNM. The boy’s body is currently being kept in the hospital mortuary.
On March 28, the 7-year-old boy was attacked by his mother’s partner, a man named Arun Anand. According to the victim’s 4-year-old brother' statement to the Child Welfare Commission, he was attacked by the accused on his eyes, arms and head until the boy collapsed. The sibling’s statement to the child welfare commission also became crucial for the authorities to identify the accused, who had been living with the family for ten months.
In her statement to the police , the mother had said that the 7-year-old was supposed to ensure that his younger brother went to the bathroom before going to bed. On Thursday, the day of the attack, the victim had slept off without making sure his brother had urinated. This resulted in the assault by the accused. During initial police questioning, the mother had denied that the victim was assaulted by the accused and instead stated that it was an accident.
However, what shocked Kerala further was the revelation that the accused had also allegedly sexually abused the boy, according to the statement by his brother.
With the boy’s death, the police have now slapped section 302 (murder) against the accused. He already has a POCSO case against him for sexually assaulting the child.
Speaking to TNM, the Thodupuzha DYSP had said that the accused had a history of assaulting the two children.