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Bengaluru boy’s suicide note names ‘bully’, cops tread with caution

Raunak Banerjee, who read in class IX at Baldwin Boys School, returned from school on June 29, went to the terrace above the 10th floor of his apartment block and jumped to his death.

Written by Santosh Kumar R B | Bengaluru | Published: July 7, 2016 1:46 am
suicide, bengaluru suicide, schoolboy suicde, ragging case, bengaluru police, bengaluru harassment case, boy commits suicide, harassed boy suicide, bully in school, raunak banerjee, indian express news, india news From the Facebook page of Dyuti Banerjee, a relative of Raunak

Investigations into the suicide of a 14-year-old schoolboy in Bengaluru last week have revealed that he had been bullied by a schoolmate who travelled with him in a private school van. Police are, however, yet to initiate legal proceedings in the case since the boy involved in the bullying is a minor, said sources familiar with the investigations by the J P Nagar police in south Bengaluru.

Raunak Banerjee, who read in class IX at Baldwin Boys School, returned from school on June 29, went to the terrace above the 10th floor of his apartment block and jumped to his death.

“We have found that it was another schoolboy in the van who had harassed him. The boy also mentioned this in a note found in his school bag. Since it involves another minor child, we are approaching the case cautiously and gave not initiated legal steps yet,” a police officer said.

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When Raunak’s mother Rumi Banerjee returned home that evening, she found the house locked. “I rang the doorbell, no one opened. I thought he was delayed, I thought he must have got stuck in the rain. I entered the house and went to the washroom. My neighbour then called on the phone and said your son is lying on the ground. I rushed there and he was in a pool of blood,” she said Wednesday.

“We are in a state of shock. My husband has been deeply affected and we don’t want to talk to anybody,” she added.

The boy’s father has gone into a shell and has not been answering phone calls, even from the police. Raunak was the younger of two siblings.

According to the police, the bullying by the other schoolboy involved taunts, which is not unusual among teenagers but which affected the sensitive child deeply. “He was humiliated in front of other students, it seems,” a police source said. “Had it been reported, it was a problem that could have been resolved by changing the mode of transport from school.”

The principal of the 136-year-old Baldwin Boys School, Dinakar Wilson, said Raunak had “not discussed the bullying with anyone. We could have sorted it out. We have a counsellor in the school to address the problems of students… The incident took place in the van hired from a private agency. It used to carry 20 students from the Baldwin boys’ and girls’ schools.”

Following the student’s death, the J P Nagar police registered a case of abetment of suicide under IPC section 306 based on Raunak’s note found in his school bag. “We need to complete procedures such as handwriting verification before taking the case forward. The matter is still under investigation,” an official said.

“We have almost zeroed in on who was involved in the bullying. We cannot disclose what exactly happened because it involves boys who are minors. We will proceed with the case under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015,” said deputy commissioner of police (south) S D Sharanappa.

Following Raunak’s death, a relative of the schoolboy, Dyuti Banerjee, has launched an online petition demanding to an anti-bullying drive in schools in Karnataka. “In the most shocking and unbelievable incident, my brother Raunak Banerjee lost his life on 29th June, 2016, when *bullying* turned fatal! He was the most soft hearted, good natured, teen of 14years! He was harassed n tortured to such an extent that ending his life was the only option he could think of. He mentioned in his suicide note that he couldn’t take it anymore and was terribly bullied by a group of boys,” she posted.

Friends and family of the student have said authorities of Baldwin Boys High School and the police are not keen to get the students involved in the bullying prosecuted. “I think they want the trail to go cold. Seems that the principal did not know Raunak’s name. Also, very strange that no one visited the bereaved parents from the school,” Kirti Poddar, a close friend of the family, wrote on his Facebook page.

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  1. A
    Adnan shahab
    Aug 6, 2016 at 11:22 am
    Raunak was actually in my school felt very bad about this thing because I have gone through this stage
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    1. A
      Arka
      Jul 10, 2016 at 9:10 pm
      No Sir, you are living in a fantasy world. Firstly, you have no idea what one really goes through before ending his/her own life. Please try to understand the problem at its root. Hurting the bullies may be a thrilling movie scene but not every soul is cast the same way. So, there has to be a social protection for the ones who need it. Also, the schools need to be more vigilant to eradicate this social evil which continues in colleges and universities as well. Some s encourage these acts as they have a notion in their pea-sized brains that ragging is a way of socialising.
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      1. B
        bahubali
        Jul 8, 2016 at 8:00 am
        BULLYING exists in all schools, a life lost is a loss. The schools need to conduct bullying awareness programmes, to show how it affects people, and also friends need to support each other. BULLIES continue into college by RAGGING. INNOCENT lives are lost......... no point in blaming suicide,parents.......this is a MENACE.schools have to take steps to curb it.
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        1. J
          joseph
          Jul 7, 2016 at 3:30 am
          Raunak had “not discussed the bullying with anyone. We could have sorted it out. We have a counsellor in the school to address the problems of students…lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;This is more of eyewash than anything else. In most cles bullying is very common. This is taken very lightly by most teachers and school authority, until Raunak type issue happens. Its important that culprit is punished and shown as an example to society. lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;RIP Raunak.
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          1. V
            venugopal
            Jul 6, 2016 at 9:22 pm
            Students behaviour at times do go over board. But its in predictable. If the matter of bullying is testified by other students and any altercation or heated exchange if any in the past alone wud alone prove a rogue student behaviour. Otherwise it might gave to be umed the poor boy could not digest few words which definitely could be testified by other students. Schools to launch a effective programme on few days on student behaviour both inside and outside campus. It's gud pol slightly slow pedal on this issue as the boy who has bullied shd also not take extreme step. The parents who lost their boy can never be compensated, but we can stand by them in this time of sorrow to overcome grief.
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