Probe finds more facts in staring case at school

Probe finds more facts in staring case at school

Preliminary inquiry by the Education department has found that the alleged harassment of a girl student by a physical instructor at Sri Sri Ravishankar Vidyamandir in the City was more than a case of “staring”.

The school management has sent the instructor on leave for 15 days after the students complained about his misconduct. The school had stated that the action was taken based on a complaint from a high school student. The student had alleged that she was not comfortable with the manner in which the instructor stared at her.

While the Karnataka State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (KSCPCR) held that even staring involving sexual intent would amount to sexual harassment, it has now been found that the case has other elements also.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, KSCPCR member Fr Edward Thomas said that they would ask the police to conduct an inquiry after receiving the report from the Education department. He said that the remaining part of the inquiry had been left to police to ensure that the students are not repeatedly asked similar questions by different sets of people. The police have already been informed, he said.

‘Schools are scared’

Fr Thomas encouraged all schools to come out in the open in case of any untoward incidents such as these. “The school managements tend to get scared. The schools should immediately report such incidents to the commission immediately. The commission will guide them about the procedures. Sometimes, things like this can crop up even after thorough background verification,” he said.

  Meanwhile, Block Education Officer, South Zone-I, Prakash K visited the school on Monday. He said that he was accompanied by a few members from the Childline.

“We spoke to girl students in every class and took their feedback. I am awaiting the Childline’s report,” the BEO said. He did not want to reveal further details at this point in order to protect the investigation. Education department officials have also suggested termination of the physical instructor from the school, though no final decision had been taken yet.

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