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Boy volte face

Balurghat, Nov. 4: A 13-year old boy, who was sent to a government-run home after he claimed that his stepmother’s torture had forced him to flee Bangladesh, today broke down during counselling and said he had lied.

Anawar Ali was found roaming in the Tapan bus stand area, 25km from here, on Sunday evening. The local people had handed him over to police, who brought him to Subhayan, the home in Balurghat.

This morning, Anwar confessed that he had fled home after stealing his uncle’s cellphone.

The boy’s father Bablu Sarkar arrived at the home this morning from Bagharpur village, close to the Bangladesh border, and took him away.

While counselling Anawar, the superintendent of the home, Shantanu Chowdhury, came to know about his aunt and her cellphone number.

“After we contacted the aunt and became sure about his real identity, he broke down and confessed that he was a student of Class VI in Bagharpur High School. Earlier he told us that he used to study in Class VII in Rashulpur High Madarsa in Naogaon district in Bangladesh,” Chowdhury said. Anwar had said he used to be denied food by his step-mother and his father often thrashed him mercilessly.

Anwar’s father told Chowdhury that he suspected the boy concocted the story after realised after fleeing home that he had nowhere to go and needed a shelter. The boy had no stepmother since his father did not have any second wife. His grandmother lives at Naogaon in Bangladesh and that is how he came to know about the Rashulpur madarsa and the district.

Sarkar said Anawar had been caught stealing the mobile and was afraid that he may be punished.

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