Pat HC | Court takes suo motu cognizance of the viral video showing a child trying to wake up his dead mother; Seeks report of Government

Patna High Court

Patna High Court: A Division Bench of Sanjay Karol, CJ and S. Kumar, J. Took suo motu cognizance of a new article of the newspaper Times of India dated 28th May, 2020 wherein an item reads as “Video of a child trying to wake up his dead mother goes viral.”

Justice S. Kumar invited attention of Chief Justice of the Court to a news paper article wherein the portion talks about a “Video of Child trying to wake up his dead mother goes viral.”

a video of a toddler trying to wake up his dead mother lying on a railway platform has gone viral on social media. The child can be seen removing a shawl covering his mother’s body.

Bench stated if the items as stated in the news report are correct of which it has no reason to disbelieve. This warrants intervention in exercise of jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, taking suo motu cognizance of the said news item.

Bench laid the following issues for immediate attention:

  1. whether the postmortem of the dead-body was conducted ? If yes, what was the cause of death ? Did the lady actually die of hunger ?
  2. was she travelling alone with her sibling ? If not, who all were her companions,
  3. what action stands taken by the law enforcing agencies,
  4. were the relatives of the deceased informed of the incident,
  5. were the last rights of the deceased performed as per the custom, tradition and the instructions issued by the government, and
  6. Above all who is now taking care of the children/sibling(s), who unfortunately lost their mother in these times of distress.

Bench before giving any order, directed S.D. Yadav, Additional Advocate General-IX to obtain instructions on the above issues.

Sri Yadav stated that the news report is partially incorrect. Deceased was mentally unstable and had died a natural death during the course of her journey. District Administration facilitated by providing an Ambulance up to the place of destination. The orphaned child is in safe custody and guardianship of the sister of the deceased.

Further Shri Yadav stated that even though the child is safe and secure, yet he shall personally pursue the matter with the authorities who would again reach out to the family, enquiring any need of assistance.

Matter to be listed on 3rd June, 2020. [Court on its own motion on the news item published in The Times of India Dated 28th May, 2020, In Re, 2020 SCC OnLine Pat 628 , decided on 28-05-2020]

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