The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Child back, battered

Calcutta, Dec. 14: A nine-year-old girl who disappeared three days ago was found wounded and traumatised this morning, lying curled and almost unconscious under a jackfruit tree in the inner garden of a house in her north Calcutta neighbourhood.

Subhra Chakraborty (in picture) had a raw wound in her forehead and another at the back of her head. She was bruised all over; her eyes had swelled shut with bloodstains at the corners, and her lips and nose were swollen from heavy blows.

The jeweller’s daughter, who had vanished moments after she stepped out of her Burtolla home on Sunday afternoon, clutching a 10-rupee note to buy a chocolate bar, was still dressed in her sky blue frock and red woollen cardigan. But the shorts she wore were gone, her mother said.

After a scan at R.G. Kar Hospital ' where she was given oxygen and saline ' found bleeding inside her head, Subhra was taken to the Bangur Institute of Neurology at SSKM Hospital. Tonight, she lay “critically ill” at SSKM’s paediatric neurosurgery ward.

“She’s in a daze; she doesn’t realise she is safe now,” said father Tapas. “She keeps muttering, imploring someone, ‘Please don’t beat me, don’t kill me, let me go home’.”

It was Manojit Dey, elder son of landlord Mohanlal Dey, who first spotted the girl at their 4 Beadon Street house, hardly 40 metres from the Chakrabortys’ Umesh Dutta Lane home near Minerva theatre.

“It was around 8 and I was brushing my teeth on the balcony,” Manojit said. “I noticed the girl under the tree.”

“Her psychological trauma is worse than the physical wounds,” SSKM superintendent Santanu Tripathi said. “She’ll take a long time to heal.”

“The child must have been lured away by someone she knew,” a police officer said.

See Metro

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