//Juvenile crippled by Gujarat police

Juvenile crippled by Gujarat police

Sachin Dave, [ Thursday, March 16, 2006 08:45:19 pmTIMES NEWS NETWORK ]

 AHMEDABAD: Life for Ravi Bodke, 17, a resident of Khokhra, has done a complete turnaround, for the worse. He can only look back to his life when he was working and was the only breadwinner of his family.

A day out with his friends changed everything. Fourteen months later, Bodke, who lives with his mother now dependent on alms to make a living.

He was shot at by the police on his left leg, leaving him with permanent physical problems. Recalling the day he sustained a bullet injury in his left leg, Bodke says, "I was returning with seven of my friends in a tempo after we were through with catching pigs.

Some policemen asked us to stop the vehicle. They started hitting one of my friends after we stopped." He adds that after that, he started running as he feared that catching pigs could be considered illegal.

"Just few feet away from the vehicle I heard a gunshot and fell unconscious. On waking up, I found myself in the Civil Hospital," claimed Bodke.

 The police claim that Bodke and his seven friends were found to be in possession of country-made firearms and that they had also fired at the police when asked to stopped in Sardarnagar area.

The seven persons who were nabbed along with Bodke are still in judicial custody. Bodke was taken to Khanpur juvenile home after being discharged from Civil Hospital. Fifteen days later, he was released from the juvenile home.

"The boy has been undergoing treatment for the past 14 months. The bullet has badly damaged his left leg and he might not be able use his leg normally despite all the treatment," said Dr Rajesh Pal, who is treating Bodke at present.

Application describing Bodke’s case was sent to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) soon after the incident. "We had received a reply stating that action would be taken against those responsible.

Yet, no action has been taken nor any compensation has been paid to me," says Bodke. According to legal experts, the fact that Bodke’s case is being ignored in spite of it being under the Juvenile Justice Act (care and protection) 2000 is quite shocking