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Physically challenged students seek to draw Naveen's attention

Staff Reporter

Gather at his residence, alleging ill-treatment by teachers

One girl who swoons is admitted to hospital Welfare officer asked to probe these allegations

BHUBANESWAR: A group of 30 speech and hearing-impaired students of a city-based special school on Saturday suddenly dropped in at the residence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to protest against `ill-treatment' by their teachers.

As the group was waiting to meet Mr. Patnaik for submission of a memorandum, a girl, identified as Rajashree Rout, collapsed. Rajashree was immediately admitted to the Capital Hospital where she gestured that "teachers of Nursery School of Deaf at Pallaspalli area were neglecting their duties and punishing student for no reason." Getting the information about the protest by students, Deputy Inspector-General of Police Y. B. Khurania rushed to the spot. The students were said to have submitted a memorandum, which charged that the "teachers were very harsh to students, they were not taking classes regularly and did not give food to them in time." Though teachers tried their best to stop them from going to CM's residence, the students did not listen to their advice.

Teachers' version

Later teachers narrated a different story. "All these happened, as teachers found some acts of indiscipline on occasion of Valentine Day.

When some girl students were asked to explain the matter, they opted this route," a faculty of the school said on condition of anonymity.

The students' strength of the Nursery School of Deaf is about 700.

Over 65 students, both girls and boys, stay in hostel. The students returned to their school, which was not so far from Chief Minister's residence, after teachers convinced them to have a discussion with them.

Meanwhile, Khurda district administration asked District Social Welfare officer to probe the allegations.