Updated: December 18, 2021 9:57:39 am
The Tirunelveli police Friday arrested three people in connection with the deaths of three students after a wall collapsed at a government-aided school on SN High Road.
Suresh Kumar, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Tirunelveli said the correspondent, headmistress and the building contractor of the Schaffer Higher Secondary School have been booked under section 304 (ii) of the IPC.
According to officials, around 10:50 am on Friday when students went to the toilet, one portion of the wall near the urinal collapsed. Hearing the scream of the students, the rest of the students reached the spot and informed teachers and other staff.
Personnel belonging to the Fire and Rescue Services and chief police officials including the Commissioner of Police Tirunelveli, NK Senthamarai Kannan reached the spot quickly.
The injured students were taken in an ambulance and rushed to Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital. Two students reportedly died on the spot and one succumbed to injuries. The deceased were identified as Anbazhagan (Class IX), Viswaranjan (Class VIII) and Sudheesh (Class VI). Four other students – Sanjay (Class VIII), Esakki Prakash (Class IX), Sekh Abukkar (Class XII) and Abudllah (Class VII) were injured in the accident.
District Collector V Vishnu said a special team will be formed to inspect the building condition of all private, government and government-aided schools within 48 hours.
“As a preliminary step, we investigated the incident through the Public Works Department (PWD). We found that one of the four covering walls was built without a proper foundation. After the technical analysis by the PWD, further action will be initiated,” he said.
The students and parents staged dharna inside the school campus seeking justice for the deceased and injured students. They sought the immediate arrest of the school officials. Students claimed the teachers, non-teaching staff failed to come to the rescue of the students or inform their parents.
Tirunelveli MLA and BJP leader Nainaar Nagenthran, who was at the school, said, “I am deeply saddened by the incident. Parents informed me that the school administration didn’t inform them immediately after the accident. It is true and condemnable,” he said.
The parents of the deceased refused to receive the mortal remains and staged protests outside the hospital. They accepted the remains only after government officials and party leaders promised action against the school management.
Chief Minister MK Stalin announced Rs 10 lakh solatium each to the families of the three students who died in the accident. He also offered Rs 3 lakh each to the injured.
Transport Minister RS Rajakanappan said as per the directions of the CM, they are closely monitoring the students who are undergoing treatment at the hospital. All four of them are stable.
The school will remain closed until further orders.
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