Calcutta, Feb. 23: A 15-year-old girl allegedly forced into marriage fled home in South 24-Parganas and came to a Calcutta court because she wanted to sit for her Madhyamik exams.
“I want to study. But nobody wants that,” the girl from Jibantala, near Canning, told the Alipore Judges Court yesterday.
Carrying her admit card and a few 10-rupee notes, she had sneaked out of home in the morning and boarded a train to Calcutta barely a month after her parents married her off to a 23-year-old day labourer.
“She had no idea about the roads in Calcutta. She asked one person after the other to guide her to Alipore court,” an officer of Alipore police station said.
The girl was spotted loitering near the Alipore Judges Court. According to the police, she told some court officials that she wanted to write her exams against her parents’ wish and was then taken to the second judge.
The court asked the police to take her home and ensure she could sit for the tests, beginning on Monday. But she later refused to go back to Jibantala, 45km from here.
“She said her stepmother had married her off and taken away her books. The girl’s father, a labourer, was forcing her to discontinue studies and go to her in-laws,” said Ram Mondal, the inspector in charge of Jibantala police station.
The girl, who spent last night at a government home in Narendrapur, was today taken to the South 24-Parganas wing of the child welfare committee. “We have arranged for a room where she can study,” said Bijali Mallik of the child welfare committee.
The girl will take her exams in Howrahmari High School in Jibantala, the police said.
“Once her exams are over, we will recommend her name to the district magistrate for a reward,” Mallik added.