“If allegations made by the victim’s parents are correct, this is the worst kind of physical punishment imparted by the teacher…" the bench said in its order.
NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday directed the Uttar Pradesh government to appoint a senior IPS officer to monitor the probe into the Muzaffarnagar incident where a Muslim student was slapped by his classmates, on the instruction of the class teacher, as a punishment for poor performance. Terming the incident as serious, a bench of Justices A S Oka and Pankaj Mithal remarked that the UP government prima facie failed to comply with the provisions of the Right to Education Act and the Uttar Pradesh Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Rules.
“If allegations made by the victim’s parents are correct, this is the worst kind of physical punishment imparted by the teacher… There can’t be any quality education if a student is sought to be penalised only on the ground that he belongs to a particular community. There is a prima facie failure on part of the state to comply with RTE Act & rules framed there under,” the bench said in its order. The court also directed the UP government to provide counselling to the victim as well as the other students involved in the incident.
The SC’s order came on a plea by Mahatma Gandhi’s great-grandson Tushar Gandhi, who sought an independent, time-bound probe and registration of FIR. In his plea, Gandhi alleged the child’s family is under pressure to strike a compromise with the offender. He told the court that the police charged the teacher only under Section 75 of the Juvenile Justice Act, and Sections 323 and 504 of the IPC that deal with cruelty to child and intentionally causing hurt, and not Section 153A of the IPC for promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, caste and language.
The bench said the IPS officer nominated by the state shall decide on invocation of Section 153A in the FIR. ‘Ensure Professional Counselling’ The SC took exception to the fact that counselling of the victim was done by the district welfare officer, saying this should have been done by a professional counsellor and that too for all the students involved (THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)