Skip to main content

On bail for 19 years, son born in jail works to raise bond for mother

By Peter Shadbolt, CNN
updated 10:19 PM EDT, Thu May 30, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • An Indian son finally secures the release of his mother who spent 19 years in jail on bail
  • The 19-year-old worked night and day in a garment factory to raise Rs5000 ($89)
  • The mother was sentenced to life in prison for murder but was released on bail pending an appeal
  • The High Court in Uttar Pradesh is now reviewing other bail cases in the state's prisons

(CNN) -- In a story that could step straight from the pages of a Charles Dickens novel, an Indian son has worked night and day in a garment factory to earn the bail money to get his mother out of jail.

This month, after ceaseless work stitching in the textile factory, Kanhaiya Kumari, 19, raised the 5,000 rupees (about $89) needed to pay his mother's surety.

His mother Vijaya Kumari, 48, was five months pregnant with Kanhaiya when she was arrested in 1993 in connection with the murder of a neighbor in India's Aligarh district, according to CNN affiliate IBN.

Sentenced to life in prison, she denied the charges and in 1994 she was granted bail pending her appeal, but her husband refused to post the Rs5,000 bail money.

"No one from my family or in-laws came to my help," she told CNN.

India's missing children
Hotels focus on traveling women
Acid attack victim: 'I had no hope'

Both mother and son remained in Nari Niketan prison in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, until Kanhaiya was sent to a juvenile remand home at the age of 6.

"I was very sad," Kanhaiya told CNN. "Without her, I had no one by me."

He was released last year after spending seven years separated from his mother and immediately set about getting a job that would pay for his mother's bail.

"He was out of work and couldn't make ends meet," said his employer AH Rehman. "He asked for a job that would provide him with some livelihood, so I got him a job in a ready-made garment shop."

Some 19 years after his mother was first jailed, Kanhaiya paid the bail money at Allahbad High Court and secured her release.

"I worked very, very hard to get the money for the release of my mother," he said. "I'm very happy now."

The case has prompted the High Court to take a closer look at the jails of Uttar Pradesh. The court has demanded a list of bailed inmates still languishing in jail.

India's courts are famously inefficient, with cases backed sometimes for decades. According to the Asian Human Rights Commission, confessions are the bedrock of India's criminal justice system making it notoriously difficult for courts to secure convictions.

The commission estimates the conviction rate for serious crimes is as low as 4 per cent of the cases that come before India's courts.

Indian acid attack victim fights for justice

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:43 AM EDT, Tue October 28, 2014
A captured fighter tells CNN's Ivan Watson: "They gave us drugs... that made you go to battle."
updated 9:31 AM EDT, Wed October 29, 2014
A terminally ill woman who plans to take her own life checks off the last item.
updated 7:40 PM EDT, Thu October 30, 2014
In a plot straight out of Hollywood, federal agents gain access to a suspected Triad boss' Vegas hotel room by pretending to fix the Internet connection.
updated 12:34 AM EDT, Fri October 31, 2014
Was it only black and Latino men who harassed a woman in NYC? The filmmaker has found himself in a race controversy.
updated 11:17 PM EDT, Thu October 30, 2014
The history of human rights often overlooks the struggles of gay people. This must change.
updated 9:15 PM EDT, Wed October 29, 2014
Armed with Kalashnikovs and chanting for the dead comrades, women are among ISIS' most feared enemies. They are fighting for their families -- and now they are getting U.S. help.
updated 8:46 AM EDT, Tue October 28, 2014
Lere Mgayiya put his best foot forward and set up a shoe-shine firm after his career plans fell flat.
updated 1:28 AM EDT, Thu October 30, 2014
One Chinese drone manufacturer wants to take away the warmongering stigma of "drones."
updated 11:12 PM EDT, Wed October 29, 2014
Sketcher Luis Simoes is traveling the world -- slowly. And he's packed his sketchbook.
updated 4:43 PM EDT, Tue October 28, 2014
European states help North Korea's brutal treatment of its people by allowing luxury goods like cars and cognacs to evade sanctions, two experts say.
updated 11:45 PM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
Chinese leaders want less odd architecture built in the country.
updated 7:06 AM EDT, Thu October 30, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT