A teenaged student of Delhi Public School, Greater Faridabad, committed suicide by jumping off his residential building in Faridabad on Thursday night, with a police complaint by his mother alleging that he was harassed over his sexuality and the school ignored her complaint.
Police said they also found a purported suicide note at the student’s residence in which he blamed his ‘school’ and ‘higher authorities’ there.
Sube Singh, Faridabad Police spokesperson, said, “The boy studied at DPS and lived with his mother, a teacher. Last year, two children made lewd remarks against him. His mother complained about this to the principal but the authorities did not do anything. We have been told that after this, the student went into depression and was seeking treatment. Because of the lockdown, the school was shut and the boy was at home. When the school reopened, the boy started going again because of exams. He felt he was being tortured (mentally). He also requested a school teacher to help him with a subject, but the teacher did not show any sympathy and accused the student and his mother of troubling her unnecessarily.”
According to the police, the incident took place around 9.15 pm. Police said that on Thursday, around 6 pm, the boy’s mother had gone to visit her father. At 9.30 pm, she received a call from a neighbour informing her that her son had jumped off the building. She rushed to the hospital, where he was declared dead.
“The boy left a suicide note saying that his mother is a brave woman and that he took the extreme step because he was being harassed by school authorities. The DCP, ACP and Crime Branch teams went to the spot and collected evidence. An enquiry has been initiated and legal action will be taken,” said PRO Singh.
The purported suicide note, addressed to his mother, states: “This school has killed me. Specially higher authorities… tell ninna and bade papa about my sexuality and whatever happened with me. And please try to handle them… You are wonderful, strong, beautiful and amazing. Don’t care what relatives say…”
In the police complaint, the boy’s mother said that a year ago, her son had confided in her that some boys in school had harassed him over his sexuality.
“I had filed several complaints to the school authorities but no action was taken by them. My son was depressed and his treatment was going on. On Wednesday, he had a science exam and since he suffered from dyslexia, he was unable to solve numerical problems in the paper. He sought help from the headmistress but she rebuked him and accused him of taking advantage of his condition. Due to this, he was quite stressed,” she alleged in the police complaint.
SHO Arjun Dev said, “On the complaint of the victim’s mother, an FIR has been registered under section 306 (abetment of suicide) of IPC against the academic head of the school, who was named in the police complaint.”
The school principal told mediapersons, “I feel sad that our student left the school and this world under tragic circumstances… I want to say that Delhi Public School is a supportive and sensitive school. Kids are nurtured here and there’s no harassment here. He was a talented and artistic student and was going to appear for his exams. … We were encouraging him, supporting him and providing him with all the necessary help. Some time back, there was some subject change, scribe assistance and extra academic classes…all this matter was going on. I know there were some personal issues…in terms of treatment etc were there. We are here to support students. The police are investigating the matter on the complaint of the family. We want an impartial enquiry so that the truth comes out and the school is vindicated.”
Speaking to The Indian Express on Friday, the victim’s mother also alleged that in March 2021, her son was sexually harassed in the school washroom by a group of schoolboys. She alleged that she “complained to the authorities verbally and later in September 2021, I wrote an email”.
“The school authorities, in their reply, said that some of the students named by me in the complaint had left the school and were no longer on its rolls. They said that the rest of the students had denied any involvement and that the incident stated by me carried no specific particulars or evidence,” she alleged.
She said that she did not file a police complaint at the time since “I am a single mother” and was scared.
Asked why she did not mention this in her complaint filed following her son’s suicide, she said: “I was in shock and trauma when police were recording my statement. My son has died due to the callous attitude of the school. He should have been listened to, heard… No child should have to go through this.”
The Indian Express reached out to the school principal over email and message to seek a response on the mother’s allegations. No response was received until Friday evening.
Police said the complaint submitted on Friday does not mention allegations of him being sexually assaulted on school premises. “If the family mentions it in the course of the investigation, we will probe accordingly. So far, they have not mentioned so,” said PRO Singh.