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Orissa moves High Court against Budhia's marathon run

Written by: Staff

Bhubaneswar, May 10 (UNI) The Orissa government today appealed to High Court to restrain four-year-old Budhia Singh from taking part in any long distance run being sponsored by his coach cum mentor Biranchi Das.

The appeal was made in response to a showcause notice issued by the court to the government on a petition filed by Mr Das challenging the authority of the Khurda District Women and Child Development Committee to summon him and appear before the board on the alleged exploitation of the child ''prodigy''.

The court while directing the government not to take any coercive action against the coach, had also asked the government to submit its counter affidavit in the case.

In its counter affidavit filed before the court, the Women and Child Welfare Department stated the committee, being a quasi judicial body, had the legal status to serve the notice to the child's coach as per the Juvenile Justice (child and prevention) Act.

The government also submitted the report of a five-member medical team constituted by the Women and Child Development Department to investigate the health condition of Budhia after he entered into Limca Book of Record on May 2 last by non-stop 65 kms run from Puri to Bhubaneswar in seven hours two minutes.

The Medical board had advised the government the four-year-old child should not be subjected to long distance run as he might become a subject of ''burnt out syndrome'' which would lead to renal failure and cardiac complication.

While submitting the medical report, the government appealed to the High Court to direct Mr Das to cooperate with the Women and Child Development Department till the finalisation of the case and refrain him from making the ''wonder kid'' to run long distance.

Meanwhile, Mr Das today filed a contempt petition before the High Court against Women and Child Development Minister Pramila Mallick, the Women and Child Development Secretary, the Chairman Child Welfare Committee, Deputy Superintend of Police (Crime Branch) and the Baragarh Police Inspector for violating the High Court's order and forcibly picked up Budhia for a medical test on May 5.

Ms Mallick who released the medical report at a news conference here on May 8 last, said she had sought the opinion of the Law and Home department on the report of the medical team restricting the marathon race of Budhia Singh on health ground.

A high level committee comprising the Law secretary, home secretary, development Commissioner and the Child Welfare secretary chaired by the Women and Child Development Minister today deliberated the medical team report on Budhia Singh and decided to wait for the decision of the High Court on the matter.

Meanwhile, both Mr Biranchi Das and Budhia Singh's mother Sukanti Singh had taken strong exception the way their kid was forcibly taken by the police to the Capital Hospital for a medical check up.

They also questioned the move of the Women and Child Development Department to put a ban on the long distance run of the child.

Budhia' coach had even conducted another medical test on the boy at a private Medical College here and claimed the test conducted by the Government Medical team was '' premature and unscientific''.


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