Parents of students who died at Virar school request CBI probe

Almost six months after the bodies of three Class IX students of a Virar school were found, the child rights commission has sought an explanation from the police as to why there’s still no clarity in the case

Almost six months after the corpses of three Class IX students of Vagad Gurukul International School in Virar were found in a river behind the school, the Maharashtra State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (MSCPCR) has sought an explanation from the police as to why there’s still no clarity on the casue of the three kids' death.

(L to R) The dead bodies of Meet Chadwa, Kushal Dagha and Prahul Patel were found behind the school premises
(L to R) The dead bodies of Meet Chadwa, Kushal Dagha and Prahul Patel were found behind the school premises

On Friday, parents of the three students were present at the commission and stated that they did not trust the police officials with the investigations anymore.

“We have filed an affidavit at the commission, requesting for this case to be transferred to CBI for further inquiry. While the school and police insists this was a case of suicide, we are sure our children were murdered,” said one of the parents.

The commission said they will look into the case and take their decision accordingly at the earliest.

The parents of the three students had earlier alleged that the police were toning down the case. “The chargesheet says our children committed suicide, whereas the autopsy clearly shows there were injury marks on their bodies. The depth of the river was barely three feet, so our kids couldn’t have drowned either. It’s really sad that the school got away so easily,” Suresh Chadwa, father of Meet, had said earlier.

“We recently filed a writ petition in the high court against Virar police and their inefficiency in handling this case. We will not rest till we find the culprits,” he had stated in December last year.

The three boys, Prahul Patel, Meet Chadwa and Kushal Dagha, all students of class IX, went missing on August 25 from their hostel rooms at 8 pm. Their dead bodies were found in a drain a few metres away from their residential school in August last year.

The boys had failed their Sanskrit exams and primary reports stated that they had been beaten up.

Nine children had left the premises, but the bodies of these three were found floating in the Sukh River behind the school 36 hours later. Virar police arrested two schoolteachers for abetment to suicide, and two others for severely punishing other students of the school. However, the cops later dropped charges of abetment to suicide, and all four were released on bail.

Brutal tales
During the investigation, when the police spoke to other students, it came to light that they were often beaten up by the teachers. Some of the parents also said their children were threatened with severe punishment if they said anything to their parents. One of the students, Jatin, registered an FIR with the Virar-based Mandvi Police Station against Sharma and Khanvilkar for beating him and other students on many occasions.

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