Nursing school staffer attempts suicide

Hena Esther, student coordinator of Church of South India School of Nursing, on August 9 was admitted to CMI Hospital after she attempted suicide by injecting herself with an overdose of insulin.

From an assault on a staff member to harassment and molestation of students, a long list of allegations have been made against the principal and other staff of the Church of South India School of Nursing in the city.

These issues, the complainants claim, have been persisting for long now and came to light only after the college student coordinator attempted suicide last week. A complaint was lodged at the Pulakeshinagar police station in this regard.

Student coordinator Hena Esther on August 9 was admitted to CMI Hospital after she attempted suicide by injecting herself with an overdose of insulin.

Speaking to DH, she claimed that she attempted suicide as the management did not look into their concerns. She added that she was physically assaulted by the principal for complaining against her. Hena said it was not her alone, but there are other students who were harassed as well.

Letters with this student coordinator (a copy of which is with DH) speak of instances where they felt harassed. "It is particularly the first year students. They are given substandard food in hostels. There are bed bugs in the rooms. An amount of Rs 7,000 is being collected as the fee only in cash and no receipt is given. They were promised three sets of uniforms and have been given only one. How will they wear the same one every day?" she questioned.

She also alleged that the principal has been issuing memos to students who speak to male batchmates or staff of the hospital, citing misconduct.

Molestation claim

Hena said that students here are forced to see only one particular doctor for all illnesses.

"There is a male doctor who even female students are referred to. These students have expressed concerns that they are touched inappropriately. Why not give these students the choice as to which doctor to consult?" she asked. She added that when the issue was brought to the notice of the immediate higher-ups, they questioned the girls in public and sought to know details of the happenings.

When DH spoke to principal Amuda Kumari, she denied these allegations and claimed that students were instigated by Hena to write letters against her.

"She threatened students asking them to write the letter, saying she will commit suicide otherwise. I have also checked about the uniforms. The money was handed over to the clerk and not me," she said. The principal also claimed that the issue of molestation by the doctor has not been brought to her notice.

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