Mumbai: 9-year-old has seizure attack after being thrashed at school

Feb 20, 2015, 12:00 IST | Shreya Bhandary

The partially blind boy’s teacher allegedly beat him up for not doing his homework; his parents said the boy had to be hospitalised the next day due to the shock of the attack

Parents of a nine-year-old boy have registered an FIR against the teacher of his school in Dadar, after he was allegedly slapped and hit by a ruler for not completing his homework. The student, who is partially blind, had to be admitted to Sion Hospital the day after the incident, as the shock of the beating caused a seizure attack.

On Thursday, parents of the child, along with other parents and students of the class, went to Dadar police station to record their statements against the teacher
On Thursday, parents of the child, along with other parents and students of the class, went to Dadar police station to record their statements against the teacher

Dadar police have registered the case and are investigating the incident. Meanwhile, the management of Our Lady of Salvation High School has apologised to the parents for the incident. “My son came home in tears that day and told me he will never go to school again.

His ears and cheeks were red and burning. The teacher had beaten him on his hand with a foot ruler, which had left his hand trembling in pain. What kind of teacher hits a student so much for not completing his homework?” asked the child’s mother.

The incident had taken place on February 11, while the parents registered the FIR on February 17, after their son was discharged from the hospital. In their statement, the parents mentioned that a day after the incident, when their son woke up at 6.30 am he had a seizure and they noticed white foam coming out of his mouth.

They rushed him to Sion Hospital, where he was kept under observation for two days, including one day in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). “It was because of the stress and shock of the beating that my son collapsed the next day. He was too scared to go back to the school,” said his mother.

“When we complained to the school, the principal blamed the teacher’s temper on her ill health. I waited till my son was discharged from the hospital and then went to the police,” she added. On Thursday, parents of the child, along with other parents and students of the class, were present at Dadar police station to record their statements.

Members of the Parents Teachers Association (PTA) also sought help of local leaders Ganesh Kadam and Sudarshan Mandlik to discuss the issue with the school principal and ensure that the teacher is not allowed to teach in the school again. “This is not the first time that the teacher has thrashed a student.

She is the head for the primary section, and is often seen punishing children for minor mistakes. It is quite surprising that the school has not taken any action against her yet,” said another parent. The PTA has requested the principal to suspend the teacher till the matter is under investigation.

Principal speak
When mid-day spoke to the principal of the school, Br Sebastian George said that the school has apologised to the student, parents, as well as the community for the incident (mid-day has a copy of the written apology). “What happened in the class was wrong. The trustees have already set up an inquiry committee, which will follow proper protocol, and file a report on the same.

Accordingly, we will take action against the teacher,” he said, adding that the teacher has applied for sick leave after the incident and has not reported to work till date. “I cannot take any action against the teacher; only the management can. We have assured the parents that action will be taken,” said the principal.

Cop speak
Dadar police has not arrested the teacher yet, or taken her statement from the time the FIR was registered. Senior Police Inspector Nishikant Patil, of Dadar police station, said, “We will not arrest the teacher right now.

First, we will take the statements of all class students, other teachers, etc before taking any further action. The teacher is not absconding, and once our investigation is complete we will arrest her.

As of now, the case has been registered under Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 324 (voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means) and (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code.”

Mind it!
The Ministry of Women and Child Development had issued a new set of guidelines in 2010, banning physical punishment of students. The first violation can invite up to one year in jail, or a fine of Rs 50,000 or both.

For subsequent violations, imprisonment can extend up to three years with an additional fine of Rs 25,000. Heads of schools will be responsible to prevent corporal punishment.

Teachers found guilty could be denied promotion, and even increments. Even the Right to Education (RTE) Act bans corporal punishment in schools.

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