Girl reunited with mother

Bonded labourer Mani finally back with family

Mani seen with her parents in Chamarajanagar. Child Welfare Committee chairman Lochana is also seen. DH Photo

Her parents were living the life of bonded labourers and after their release, Udupi’s Child Welfare Centre where it was staying, has successfully brought them together.

Gundlupet taluk Halladakeri’s Ramaswamy and wife Manjamma went in search of jobs to Ayyappanagar (Ukkandur) in Udupi district’s Karkala taluk about 20 years ago. They were working in Durga Parmeshwari crusher unit. A few years later crusher owner Vrishiba had used his physical strength and money power and kept them in custody. He had kept them as bonded labourers. His brother Raviraj was torturing them physically and mentally. Seven years ago this poor family tried to escape from the clutches of the brothers.

One day Ramaswamy accompanied Vrishba on his motorbike and disappeared. Till now his whereabouts are not known.

Then the girl child Mani was four years old. Manjamma tried to escape with her two chidlren.The owner had broken her hand. When she came for treatment to the town along with her daughter and adoted son Murugan (15), she left them behind and escaped to her sister’s house in Gundlupet.

Later, they gave a complaint to the Women Rehabilation Centre regarding the children being in custody. However, due to the money and muscle power of the owner, counsellor N M Saraswathi was not successful in getting the children released.

Finally with the assistance of the Gundlupet police the children were released on January 8, 2010. Mani was admitted to the Child Welfare Centre in Udupi district. Last May, a memorandum was submitted to Chamarajanagar Child Welfare Committee president Lochana by the rehabilation centre. She discussed this issue with the Udupi centre.

As Murugan preferred to stay with his uncle, Mani was shifted to the child welfare centre.

Now, she has been reunited with her mother Manjamma. She has also been admitted to first standard in Gundlupet Government Lower Primary School.


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