New Delhi: A case has been registered by the Delhi police against the doctor-couple, who had locked up their 13-year-old domestic help inside the house and left for a holiday. The couple, Dr Sunita Verma and Dr Sanjay Verma, has been charged with include wrongful confinement, buying or disposing of any person as a slave, unlawful compulsory labour and causing grievous injury.
Locked up in a second-storey highrise in Dwarka’s Sector 6 allegedly by the couple on a six-day vacation in Bangkok, the girl’s cries from her balcony alerted the neighbours. They had the gumption to call the officials of Shakti Vahini, an NGO, to rescue her with the help of police and fire personnel. The girl will be provided shelter at Nirmal Chaya, informed a Shakti Vahini official.
Police said there were several bruises on the girl’s body, which they claimed indicated that she was regularly beaten up. The wife had cut off the teen’s hair, which had left some bald patches. The girl corroborated the police version saying she had been subjected to abuse on earlier occasions as well. The victim told the police and her counsellors that this was not an isolated incident. She had been locked up the same way in the past as well. “They would often lock me like this and go away. There was some food this time for the first three days, but after that I could not eat anything… They have locked up all the stuff.”
The couple had installed at least two CCTV cameras in the house through which they monitored her activities. If the footage showed her watching television in their absence, consuming food or sitting in their bed, she would be mercilessly beaten. She was allowed to sit only on the floor.In a statement recorded before the magistrate, the girl gave details of how the couple made her work the whole day, clean their clinic and gave her only two rotis to eat in the evening.
The girl was brought from an employment agency in Jharkhand but claims she never got paid. A case has also been registered against the girl’s placement agent, Mukesh, for buying or disposing of any person as slave. The vice-president of the housing society, Dr A K Sikdar, said that the couple has been living here for a long time. “It was not expected of them. It’s quite shocking,” he said, adding, “This is the first such incident heard of here, I hope it’s the last.”
The child welfare committee has asked the medical council to consider revoking the medical degrees of the doctor-couple.