A class one student studying in a government primary school in Churachandpur district of Manipur was hospitalised after he was allegedly subjected to corporal punishment by a substitute teacher for not bringing textbooks to the class.
The eight-year-old boy is currently undergoing treatment at the district hospital. A case has been lodged against the substitute teacher identified as Demnang Haokip, on Friday.
“We are trying our best to track down the perpetrator who is still absconding. We will soon arrest him,” said Mangpu, additional SP, Churachandpur district.
Preliminary report revealed that Demnang Haokip, who “assaulted” the boy on April 26 at the school for not bringing text books, was not a “genuinely appointed” teacher but a substitute for his mother L Chingkholam Haokip, a primary teacher posted at the school.
It is learnt that Demnang went to the school in place of his mother who was reportedly sick. The education department of Manipur has suspended the mother of the accused. An order issued in this regard has barred Chingkholam (the mother) from leaving the headquarters without prior information from the authority concerned.
The Manipur Commission for Protection of Child Rights (MCPCR) has also taken suo motu cognisanace of the issue. The MCPCR, strongly condemning the act, said: “the very illegal act of engagement of a substitute without prior permission of higher authority warranted appropriate intervention from the concerned official of Education department”.
The commission also directed the concerned Zonal education officer, under whose jurisdiction the school is located, to submit a detailed action report on the incident.
“It has become a common practice for government teachers in the state to send substitute teachers in their place. This is not the first time. How can an untrained individual take the place of someone who is trained to do the job, this is not acceptable. Action should also be taken against the school authority who had allowed such unethical practice,” said Keisham Pradipkumar, a member of MCPCR.
“The MCPCR considers, the incident is an stark violation of section 16 (Prohinition of physical and mental harassment to child) of ‘Right of Children to Free and Compulsory (RTE) Act, 2009’ and also an instance of committing cruelty to child as defined in the section 75 of The Juvenile Justice (care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015,” he said.