A picture that’s worth a thousand sad words – the anguish, the terror and fear in a mother and father after having their precious only child Aryan abducted from their care by Norway’s Child Welfare Services/System (NCWS), Barnevernet.
Aryan, an innocent five year old Indian boy, was snatched just before Christmas.
No warning, no due process, no court order, no social intervention of help of any kind – just another Norwegian “snitch and snatch”.
Aryan has now been sent to a children’s welfare home in Hamar, about 150 km away from Oslo, where this photo was taken.
NCWS have accused the parents of beating Aryan up. Aryan’s father, Anil Kumar, said, “The Child Welfare Department of Norway took custody of my five-and-a-half-year-old son on December 13, at 9.30 am, from his kindergarten school. They did not give us prior information. At 10 am, the same day, four policemen came to my house, took my wife into custody, and interrogated her from 11.15 am to 2.45 pm. When we asked for the reason, it was conveyed to us that we had beaten up our son,” said Kumar, who migrated from Punjab to Norway about 26 years ago.
“They interrogated our child for about one-and-a-half hours. They showed us some of those videos. The video shows that when asked whether Aryan’s parents have loud discussions with each other and if they beat him up, his answer was no. When they asked him whether his grandfather had beaten him up, he became very angry,” said Kumar.
Kumar claimed that the police then took his son to another room. On his return to the place where he was being interviewed and videotaped, the child then reportedly told the police that he had been beaten up.
If you have experienced how NCWS works, you will know that many interviewers in NCWS use leading questions with children, and with this technique, they will often get the child to say anything they want him to say, even if it takes many hours to do so.
Kumar and his wife met their son at the welfare home on Monday. “He was wearing the same clothes and undergarments in which he had gone to kindergarten in a week ago. He is not receiving proper care from the child welfare department. He hugged us and cried a lot… he is our only child…why would we torture him,” he said.
“He is an active child, and is very fussy about eating… He likes to eat Indian food… he is being given bread and porridge, and has not been eating well,” he said. “I have never even raised my voice at him, how can I beat him up? His mother spent sleepless nights taking care of him as he is an asthma patient. How can we physically hurt our beloved son,” said Kumar.
“We are very disturbed. His 80-year-old grandfather is a heart patient and has not eaten properly… We are very scared. We are not able to concentrate on anything. They have snatched away our son from us. We can´t live without him. We are shattered. We are crying day and night,” he said
“We met the child welfare officials twice, on December 14 and 16, and they haven’t been able to produce any evidence. They said they received a complaint from a person. We are not sure who registered this baseless complaint against us…By doing this, he or she has ruined our family life,” he said, as he hinted at a personal rivalry.
The Norwegian Embassy in India had asked for “restraint” in the case, assuring that it is being handled with “complete sensitivity and awareness”. Well, that would be particularly unique for NCWS, if that was the case.
Allegedly, the Norwegian authorities also approached the Indian media early on, asking them to stay silent.
The NCWS, Barnevernet is a powerful machine and as one renowned Norwegian Psychologist remarked, a “machine of evil”, that bulldozes in sporadic fashion over able and caring families.
Venil Katharina Thiis is a lawyer from Trondheim. She made this remark about Norway’s Child Welfare Services, Barnevernet.
“I have been working with cases involving child care for over 20 years and have seen how the legal rights of both children and parents have increasingly diminished over the years.
Barnevernet has more power than they are able to manage, so often end up abusing the authority they hold. As to this, they have developed a culture where the last solution, force, often becomes the first alternative, as opposed to forming dialogue which can lead to voluntary methods.
They also have many “locked doors” where disqualified psychologists control, both the County Board and the courts. What happens in the County Boards is therefore undemocratic – it’s David’s encounter with Goliath.”
(Some parts extracted and edited from an article written by Shubhajit Roy | New Delhi, for The Indian Express).