A 47-year-old English language teacher was arrested for hitting and pinching a 13-year-old girl’s bottom, after he found multiple spelling mistakes while checking her notebook in school last Thursday. Other students, whose statements were recorded by the Kandivli police, claim that this is not the first time that he has touched a student inappropriately.

According to the police, the arrest was made on Monday, after an FIR was registered, based on the statements of the girl, who approached them along with her parents.

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The arrested accused was identified as Sanjay Pawar, who teaches English in a school on MG Road in Kandivli (west).

The incident is said to have occurred around 7.30 am on January 21. Pawar was checking her notebook and found spelling mistakes in it. Police said he hit her on the back with his hand, and then pinched her on various parts of her body, including her bottom, stomach and near her chest. The girl narrated the incident to her parents, saying she was left embarrassed and red-faced in front of her classmates.

Her parents immediately took up the issue with the school’s principal. They submitted a written complaint seeking prompt action against Pawar. But to their dismay, the principal allegedly said he was unable to take action and suggested they approach the police.

Senior Police Inspector Mukund Pawar, Kandivli police station, said, “We have recorded the statements of other students who told us the teacher has a habit of touching students inappropriately.”

The teacher has been arrested under Section 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) of the IPC and sections of the POCSO Act. He was granted bail by a Sessions court.