School didn't have CCTV cameras, lacked most safety measures

School didn't have CCTV cameras, lacked most safety measures

No lessons learnt: Mob goes berserk as yet another girl is 'molested' in school

School didn't have CCTV cameras, lacked most safety measures

The government-aided school at Hosaguddadahalli here, which witnessed violence on Wednesday following the alleged molestation of an underage girl by a teacher, lacked most of the safety measures prescribed by the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) and the police following a spate of similar incidents since June 2014.

The school has two sections: primary (classes 1-7) and the high school. Both are housed in separate buildings. The two buildings are located along a busy road.

The DPI had also directed the Deputy Directors of Public Instruction (DDPIs) and the Block Education Officers (BEOs) to form three-member committees and inspect schools for minimum compliance of the safety guidelines.

Mohammed Mohsin, Commissioner, DPI, said that as part of that inspection, education officials had found that the school in question had “partly complied” with some guidelines and “didn’t comply” with others. “The school doesn’t have any Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras,” he told Deccan Herald, without specifying what other guidelines the school had flouted. “We will compile a report and take necessary action.

” Attempts to get more details from Nagarathna D, BEO, Bengaluru South-2, on the matter, didn’t fructify.

A number of parents, who had come to pick up their children in the afternoon, lost contact with their wards and were seen desperately trying to reach them. Forget the children’s safety, there were reports that even other members of the school staff were manhandled by the mob that eventually ransacked the entire school.

Child safety update
The information gathered by three-member committees on schools’ compliance is still being uploaded on the DPI website even though the deadline was November 29, 2014.

A draft of the child safety policy, prepared by the Department of Women and Child Development, was released in November last year for suggestions from the public. A highly placed official in the department said that the document was being circulated among various departments involved in framing the initiative.

“All the officials concerned will give their suggestions and we will finalise the policy soon,” the official said.

Besides, a 14-member committee that was formed to make a comprehensive safety policy on the basis of previous guidelines issued by various departments hasn’t done much except for holding a few meetings. Additional Chief Secretary, V Umesh, heads the committee. Mohsin, a member of the committee, said: “We had two or three meetings. We are going to finalise the document and submit the file shortly to the government.” 

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