‘He is only 8’: In Bihar, a mother fights for release of minor son arrested after communal clash


On September 9th, Sheena Khatoon’s son was arrested by local authorities. He, along with 35 other people have been hit with charges relating to rioting, rioting with a deadly weapon, attempt to murder, assault, disturbing a religious assembly, causing grievous hurt, provoking breach of peace and criminal conspiracy. However there is just one problem, the boy’s birth certificate clearly shows that he is only 8 years old.  

Amit Kumar Pandey, Siwan district magistrate, told authorities that the boy “told them when he was in custody” that he was 13 years old.

Section 83 of the Indian Penal Code states that the acts of a child – defined as being between seven and 12 – cannot be considered as offenses until he has “attained sufficient maturity of understanding to judge the nature and consequences of his conduct”.

The website scroll.in examined the birth certificate and have found it to be authentic.

Video evidence has shown that men wearing saffron colored clothing, the color associated with Hindu activism, around 4:30pm.  They were carrying swords and sticks and approached the Madina Masjid right around the time for Asr prayer.  Video evidence shows that Hindu rally participants were stoning the masjid while masjid goers responded by throwing rocks from the top floor.  Both the boy and his 70year old grandfather were taken into custody.  

The grandfather was granted bail, however his grandson has yet to be released.

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