A government school teacher has been booked for allegedly assaulting a Dalit student for sitting in the front row in Madhya Pradesh's Singrauli.
The decision to slap a case under relevant provisions of the Indian Penal Code and Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, against the accused teacher, Jagriti Singh, was taken after the District Education Officer (DEO) found evidence of assault and discrimination during a preliminary probe, said Singrauli District Magistrate Rajeev Ranjan Meena on August 18.
The process of suspension has also been initiated, he added.
The purported incident took place on August 2. In the police complaint, the victim Sakshi (name changed), a student of Class 12th of the Government Higher Secondary Girls School, Baidhan, said that when Ms. Singh entered the classroom that day, she saw Sakshi sitting on the front bench and started abusing her.
“She followed it up by using casteist slurs and hitting me continuously on my head due to which I fell unconscious and remained in that state for the next two to three hours,” the complaint quotes the victim as saying. The complaint is endorsed by several other girls in the class whose names appear as co-signatories.
Mr. Meena added that the teacher had used a book to hit the pupil.
It was then that the girl approached the District Magistrate and the Superintendent of the Police with a complaint.
“Following this, we initiated a probe and the DEO found that prima facie the teacher was guilty. The report was submitted to us on Wednesday. A case under the relevant provisions of the Indian Penal Code and Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, has been registered. We have also written to the concerned department to initiate the process of suspension,” said Mr. Meena.
The teacher in question has also been accused of casteist slurs in the past when she was posted in another school.