FIR has been altered to make punishment up to 10 years in jail

The city police informed the Madras High Court on Wednesday that the provision in the FIR relating to the drowning of a boy in his school swimming pool recently has been altered to make the offence punishable with 10 years instead of a two-year prison term.

The FIR initially invoked Section 304A (causing death by negligence), but it has been altered to a case of 304 (Part II) (culpable homicide not amounting to murder, where there is no intention to cause death).

The case relates to the death of Ranjan in the swimming pool of Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan Senior Secondary School at K.K.Nagar here on August 16.

When the matter came up before the First Bench comprising the Chief Justice M.Y. Eqbal and Justice T.S. Sivagnanam, the Deputy Commissioner of Police and the Inspector, K.K. Nagar police station here filed counter-affidavits stating that originally the case had been registered under 304A. After investigation, it had been found that the ingredients of the offence under Section 304, Part II, had been made out against the accused persons.

During investigation, examination of witnesses and collection of documents, it was revealed that the accused had not followed the norms laid down by CMDA, Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu and the Central Board of Secondary Education. Hence, an alteration report was filed before the XXIII Metropolitan Magistrate, Saidapet, on October 9.

The counter also said the parents of the deceased boy were examined on October 4 and also some students studying in Standard IV, ‘F’ section, were examined on different dates.

The Bench said it would not express any opinion with regard to the findings recorded during investigation. However, having regard to the averments in the counter, it was adjourning the case by six weeks to enable the police to proceed with investigation.

Referring to the submissions of M. Radhakrishnan, counsel for a petitioner, the Bench said that so far as prosecuting the school Dean was concerned, it could not direct the police to prosecute a particular person. “However, the question as to whether the court could direct prosecution of a particular person against whom material is brought on record is an issue to be decided later on.”

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