Cairo: An Egyptian man had been arrested after his wife accused him of torturing their daughter for eating fried meatballs without his permission, local media reported on Saturday.

The father, an employee in a mosque in the delta city of Mansura, had allegedly locked the child in the house for four months and harmed her in different parts of the body, independent newspaper Al Youm Al Saba said.

The mother told investigators that her husband used to brutally beat the girl for the slightest reasons, causing the child to suffer nervous disorders and lack of concentration, according to the paper.

The father, 30, was quoted as saying that he wanted to “discipline” his child for pilfering food from the fridge and telling lies.

The child was this week admitted to a local hospital to treat her for physical and psychological problems.

The father faces charges of using cruelty against a child, an offence punishable in Egyptian law by a minimum one year in prison.

In September, an Egyptian court sentenced a manager of an orphanage south of Cairo to three years in prison after convicting him of being cruel to underage children and jeopardising their lives.