A SPECIAL court on Wednesday sentenced a school teacher to one year in jail in a 2016 sexual harassment case, in which five girls had approached the school principal against the teacher.
Later, two recorded their statements before the police and one deposed before the court. The prosecution had declared the girl as well as her mother hostile as they did not completely support the police’s case. The court, however, relied on some of their submissions to find the accused guilty.
In 2016, police had booked the teacher under Sections 354 (sexual harassment) and 509 (outraging modesty) of the Indian Penal Code.
According to the 13-year-old victim, who deposed before the court, she was studying in Class VII at the time of the incident on October 10, 2016. On that day, she was collecting library cards and was asked to sit appropriately by the teacher. The girl stated that he had made an objectionable statement and when she asked him to not speak in such a manner, he had told her that he was her superior in age.
The victim told the court that she and three of her classmates had gone to the school principal and complained against him, following which the principal had asked the teacher to behave.
The girl’s complaint states that later, the teacher came to their classroom for one period as the regular teacher for the subject was on leave and assaulted the girls with a stick for complaining against him.
The defence had stated that the girls had not completed their homework on the day and had lodged a false complaint. The prosecution further stated that after the parents of the girls got to know of the matter, they too complained to the principal and the teacher was sent on compulsory leave. But, subsequently resumed work.