MP girl who took govt 'for a ride' sent home

LucknowNeha Sharma, who appeared unwell, being taken to her hometown Bhind on Wednesday. EXPRESS

The girl who hitched a ride in an aircraft carrying stranded pilgrims from Dehradun to Bhopal was sent in an ambulance to Bhind district. The girl had claimed that her parents had died in the mishap. But it was later found that they were alive.

The Madhya Pradesh government admitted that the girl's claims were "misleading". But the Opposition blamed it for cashing in on the tragedy for its emotional appeal. The girl, who said she was Snehlata, turned out to be Neha Sharma of Bhind.

She works as a data entry operator and also as an LIC agent. Neha had told the family that she was going on an "official tour" to Delhi. The Bhind administration is putting together her trip from Bhind to Uttarakhand and how she convinced the rescue team about the fake ordeal.

One of the seven siblings, in Bhind town she is known as Jyoti Sharma. But the ration card says she is Neha, daughter of Mahavir Prasad Sharma. She had refused to recognise her father when he visited her at J P Hospital in Bhopal on Tuesday.

Despite her "misleading" claim, the girl appeared to be ill. The Congress alleged that she was sent to Bhind to avoid the media even though she was not in a position to travel such a long distance.

Bhind Collector C D Chakravarty said the girl's parents never went to Uttarakhand. They had been to Dwarka last month as part of a government-sponsored pilgrimage. He said the family is well off and owns substantial land.

The Collector said several people, including an LIC development officer, have given statements identifying her as Neha. She would be provided further treatment at Bhind government hospital but the administration has decided against extending any financial help.

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