Four teachers of a trust-run school in Tharad town of Banaskantha district in Gujarat were booked for abetment to suicide after a 16-year-old student of Class X hanged himself in his house, reportedly after the teachers allegedly thrashed him in the school on Monday.
The school, Shree Gayatri Vidyalaya, is run by the Shree Tharad taluka Aanjana Patel Kelavni Mandal, whose founding trustee is BJP MLA Parbat Patel.
The protesting parents and community members of the victim, who happens to be a Dalit, vandalised the school Tuesday.
The Banaskantha district police said the teenager hanged himself at his residence in Ambedkar Society on Mulupur road in Tharad.
Police station officer Rewabhai Gujarati said, “The boy was a Dalit and his community members gathered in large numbers outside the school and pelted stones, broke window panes and even torched some portions of the school building in protest.”
The police said the victim was allegedly severely beaten up by four school teachers — Sangaram Patel, G K Patel, B M Patel and Bhathiji Thakore — all of whom have been named in the FIR.
According to the complaint lodged by victim’s father, Kishan Chauhan, the boy came back from school on Monday afternoon and narrated the entire incident to his father, stating that four teachers pushed him inside a classroom and beat him up severely.
They had locked the classroom from inside so that he couldn’t escape.
The teachers also allegedly tried to hit him with a foot rule and duster, the police added.
A few hours after he told his father about the ordeal, he allegedly hanged himself with a rope.
His father was out for two hours and there was no one else at home, the police said. When he returned, he saw his body hanging from the hook of the fan.
When contacted, BJP MLA Parbat Patel told the The Indian Express: “The boy was at fault. He had damaged the classroom. The teachers simply questioned him and had called for his father and mother the following day, but the boy went home and committed suicide. The boy was not murdered that these people had to vandalise the school in this manner. At least 3,000 students study here who are from different castes, which also includes Dalits. Till date there has been no such incident in this school and nobody has made such allegations.”