The Madras High Court on Monday granted anticipatory bail to the deputy dean, director and physical education instructor of a school here.

This was in the case relating to the death of a student in the school swimming pool in August.

Following the death of Ranjan in the swimming pool of Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan Senior Secondary School at K.K. Nagar here on August 16, the police had registered a case under Section 304 (II) IPC.

Petitions seeking advance bail were filed by Sheela Rajendra, the deputy dean and R. Ravichandran, physical education instructor.

Ms. Sheela Rajendra said they had taken utmost care of each and every student since the date of inception of the institution. Students of the school had excelled in academic and extra-curricular activities. The school had never met any unforeseen incident as that of the instant one. It had never been negligent when it came to taking care of its students. The swimming pool had been managed independently by a recognised agency with all necessary care and attention.

Proper, trained and skilled persons were responsible for the day-to-day management and running of the swimming pool. All necessary permissions and sanctions with regard to the swimming pool were obtained at the relevant points in time. She said no part of negligence could be attributed to her.

Counsel Abudukumar Rajarathinam said Mr. Ravichandran was in no way connected to the offence since he was not in charge of the swimming pool activities.

Justice Sudanthiram said there was no direct act on the part of the petitioners connecting them to the tragedy. There was no prima facie material at this stage to hold that the school authorities had acted with knowledge that by their act they were likely to cause the death of the boy. Also, there was no likelihood of the petitioners absconding.

He ordered that the two be released on bail on their executing a bond for Rs. 25,000 and furnishing two sureties to the satisfaction of the police concerned. They should appear before police on Saturdays and Sundays for four weeks.


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