Parents and guardians shattered glass doors and damaged an LED screen at a school in Karve Nagar after authorities tried to hush up a molestation incident involving a driver and an attendant of a school bus; parents expressed outrage that the accused were still on duty, putting other children at risk too
A leading school on Karve Road resounded with angry shouts and slogans and stone pelting yesterday, as parents went on a rampage, protesting against the molestation of a four-year-old junior kindergarten student.
Parents vandalised the school premises after it came to light that the administration had not taken any action against a bus attendant and a driver, who had sexually assaulted the minor on Friday.
Anger swills: Cops arrived at the school after parents damaged school property. Pics/Mohan Patil
Angry parents damaged school property and demanded immediate action by the school authorities against the driver and attendant. Irked that their children were put at risk, parents entered the premises and shattered glass doors of the school around 9 am and also broke an LED screen. The angry mob then turned their attention to the driver and attendant, who were surprisingly, on-duty and beat them up. The parents then filed a complaint with the Deccan police station.
Violence: A cop at the school after parents broke the glass doors and an LED TV. Pics/Mohan Patil
Acting on their complaint, the bus attendant Amol Maruti Sherkar and driver Vinayak Bhikaji Karande were arrested by the cops.
Priya Kothadiya, one of the parents who took the step to lodge the complaint, said, “We were shocked to hear that the attendant was molesting the girl for the past few days. The girl was so traumatised by the incident that she would wake up from her sleep in tears. We were informed that the attendant had threatened the girl not to tell anyone about the the incident.”
Kothadiya added that the incident came to light when the disturbed girl could no longer take it, and told her mother. “The mother immediately took her for a medical examination and then approached the school on Saturday. However, rather than taking action against the accused, the principal said that they did not find any problems with the bus attendant, who was working in the school for the past four years.”
An angry Kothadiya told mid-day that it was shocking that the school had taken no punitive action and it was, their responsibility to file an FIR in such situations. However, no action had been taken.
Gauravi Sandbhor, a parent
How could the school send the same attendant and driver to pick up the students after they were made aware that such an incident had occurred?
Hundreds of parents showed up at the school on Monday morning demanding that the school take action against the accused bus driver and attendant.
I learnt that the same attendant picked up my children from school. Why is it that these culprits have been allowed to continue working, despite the school being informed of the crime?
Kiran Paraswar, another parent
This incident has raised many questions. In the past, the school has not felt the need to conduct parent-teacher meetings. But this incident takes it to another level. We demand that we get a letter from the school informing us what action they will take against the bus driver and attendant.
Director of the school Maruti Navle trying to calm the parents down
Director of the school, Maruti Navle, said, “I am aware that such an incident took place in the morning. The school is lodging an FIR and all those involved will be punished. If police investigations reveal that the principal has delayed lodging the complaint, we will also take action against her.”
The Deccan police has filed a case against both the accused under sections 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) of the Indian Penal Code and sections 5, 7 and 8 of Protection of Children from Sexual Offence Act, 2012 (POCSO).
“The school lodged an official complaint against the school bus attendant and driver. We have initiated the probe in the case,” P A Chougule, inspector of Deccan police station said. When asked if a case would be filed against the parents who ransacked the premises, cops added that they would be filing a case against the mob. However, at the time of going to press, the complaint had not yet been registered.