V. Chandrashekhar and his wife Anupama, the Indian couple currently in Norwegian custody for “gross and repeated” maltreatment and abuse of their 7-year-old son Sai Sairam, may well be convicted on Wednesday by a court in Oslo.
Aften Posten, the respected Oslo daily, reported that the father faced charges of burning his son with a hot ladle, flogging him with a belt and repeatedly threatening him. According to the paper, the case is so serious the parents are unlikely to be let off without a prison sentence.
Kurt Lir, Head of the Oslo Prosecutor’s office, said: “There were burn marks and scars on the body of the child, who has also been beaten by a belt.”
But, Marte Svarstadt Brodtkorb, the lawyer for Anupama Chandrasekar, says that if the boy had been flogged the doctor who sees the child twice a week would have spotted the marks. Ms. Brodtkorb said she was preparing an appeal since it looked as if the couple might be convicted and sent to prison.
The lawyer also said there had been difficulties in translation. For instance, the child told the police the father had threatened to burn his tongue. Mr. Chandrashekhar said he was using an oft used metaphor — in Telugu it is said: “If you continue to tell lies your tongue will be burnt.” But the police were in no mood to listen, the lawyer said.
Aften Posten, the Oslo daily, reported that the advocate of the father, Adeline Brenden-Veisal was highly critical of how the Indian couple was treated. “Their passports have been impounded and they have been dumped into jail,” Ms. Brenden-Veisal told the paper.
She said the father came to Norway to work as an IT consultant in 2010. The rest of the family had no intentions of coming to Norway but because the son missed his dad, they came during the spring of 2011.
The son has behavioural issues. According to the lawyer, the family tried to seek help with the concerned authorities through the school but did not obtain any help.
“The father has acknowledged that he accidentally scalded his son with a hot spoon with which he had threatened him. This is not domestic violence per se,” said Ms. Brenden-Veisal.
The mother and the child went back to India as the child became worse during his stay in Norway. The mother came back last weekend in order to participate in the court proceedings.