News video of toddler trying to wake up dead mother at railway station: Patna HC takes cognizance

Central Government, Indian Railway and Bihar Government were added as Respondents to the petition

Photo courtesy- social media
Photo courtesy- social media
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NH Web Desk

Calling the incident "shocking and unfortunate", Patna High Court has taken suo motu cognizance of a news item on the video of a child trying to wake up his dead mother at Muzaffarpur Railway Station, legal news website BarandBench.com has reported.

Chief Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice S Kumar took note of an article titled "Video of a child trying to wake up his dead mother goes viral" which was published in Patna edition of Times of India on May 28.

“If the contents of the new items are correct, of which we have no reason to disbelieve, for the paper being of national repute having wider circulation, then the incident is rather shocking and unfortunate. This warrants intervention by us in exercise of our jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India and as such we take suo motu cognizance of the news item and issue notice,” Patna HC said.

The Court said that the following issues would warrant immediate attention:

  • Whether the postmortem of the dead-body was conducted? If yes, what was the cause of death? Did the lady actually die of hunger?

  • Was she travelling alone with her sibling? If not, who all were her companions?
  • What action stands taken by the law enforcing agencies?
  • Were the relatives of the deceased informed of the incident?
  • Were the last rights of the deceased performed as per the custom, tradition and the instructions issued by the government?
  • Who is now taking care of the children/sibling(s), who unfortunately lost their mother in these times of distress?

After the matter was registered as a petition, the court directed the Registrar concerned to list it for hearing at 2:15 PM today itself, through video conferencing.

Central Government, Indian Railway and Bihar Government were added as Respondents to the petition.

The court also asked the counsel for Bihar Government to ascertain if this particular incident was being considered by the Supreme Court in the suo motu petition before it.


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Published: 28 May 2020, 7:59 PM