Haryana: After Jind, Sexual Harassment Complaints by Students Against Principal of Kaithal Govt School
Image for representational purpose.
In another shocking incident reported from Haryana, two class XII students from a government senior secondary school in a village in Kaithal district reported a case of sexual harassment on December 4. The girls broke their silence and filed a written complaint with help from the father of the village sarpanch.
The sarpanch’s father helped the girls to file a complaint against the principal of the school, Ravi Kumar, who has been arrested, reported The Tribune. The police have also booked a construction contractor hired by the school authorities for some work in the case. The contractor’s name has not been disclosed and he remains absconding.
The girls have alleged that when the contractor and the principal used to have lunch together, girl students were forced to serve lunch and water to them. According to reports, the contractor has also been accused of coming to their classrooms frequently for no reason.
The harassment continued for several days, according to reports, and the girls have alleged in their complaint that the principal used to threaten to rusticate them if they spoke about it.
Upasana, Superintendent of Police (SP), Kaithal was quoted as saying: “After the statements of the two students before the magistrate, we have booked the contractor in this case under Section 10 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and Sections 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and 354-A (sexual harassment) of the IPC. Our team members are conducting raids at different places to nab the accused.”
“We are monitoring the case from all angles. Internal complaint committees in schools are being sensitised to keep a vigil on such cases. Two women officials —Inspector Geeta and the SHO of the women police station — are making efforts under a special campaign to sensitise the girl students to good touch and bad touch. We will ensure that the victims get justice and the culprits are punished,” she added, according to The Tribune.
A special investigation team under Guhla DSP Kuldeep Beniwal visited the school on Thursday and spoke to students, teachers, and parents. While no written statement was submitted, several other students levelled allegations of rude behaviour against the principal.
The incident has come to light days after another shocking revelation from a government school in the Jind district of Haryana, where 142 girl students had provided testimonies of physical and mental torture by the school’s principal last month.
The three-member committee formed by the Jind district administration to look into the matter of alleged abuse by the principal, Kartar Singh, of a government school in the district recently submitted its report to the education department of the state.
As per the report, initially, there were 60 victims, which increased to 142 after the committee started hearing the accounts of the students. Of the 142 victims, a majority have alleged that they were sexually assaulted by the principal. The principal is currently in jail.
The matter came to light when 15 victims sent a letter to the President, the Prime Minister, the Chief Justice of India, the National Women Commission, and the State Women Commission, among others, on August 31 this year to raise the issue. After receiving the letter, the Haryana Women Commission took note of it on September 13 and "sent it to Jind police for action on September 14, but the police lodged an FIR only on October 30."
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