Girl punished by teacher dies
Deccan Herald, April 18, 2009

North Delhi: An 11-year-old girl, who was beaten up and made to stand out in the sun for not knowing the English alphabet, died here on Friday sending shock wave across the nation.

Shannoo Khan, a Class-II student of a school run by Municipal Corporation in North Delhi, slipped into coma on Wednesday after her class teacher reportedly beat her up and made her stand in the sun for more than two hours, after she failed to recite the alphabet.

The girl was shifted to the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital on Thursday evening after her condition deteriorated. Her end came on Friday afternoon.

According to sources, the teacher had allegedly hit the girl’s head against the table before making her stand out in the sun. Unable to bear the heat , the girl fainted. Her younger sister who studies in the same school informed her mother, who soon rushed the girl to a nearby hospital.

“A case of culpable homicide not amounting to murder was registered against the teacher following the death of the girl. The teacher will be arrested soon,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (outer district) Atul Katiyar told reporters.

As the news spread like wildfire, a large number of people surrounded the school and raised slogans against the school authorities. The school was closed and policemen were stationed outside its gates. Delhi Mayor Arti Mehra said both the teacher and principal were suspended and teacher’s services would be terminated soon.

This is not an isolated incident in Delhi. In March 2008, a 15-year-old girl was hit by a male teacher for refusing to take private tuition from him. The girl died after remaining in coma for nearly two-and-a-half months. Last month, 10 students of a government-run school in the national capital were thrashed by teachers after students created noise during mid-day meal.

Deploring the incident, Union Minister for Women and Child Development Renuka Chaudhury asked the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) to be more pro-active and set up a counselling centre to council parents and teachers about the sensitiveness of the teaching profession. She also said that the Ministry had asked all states to start National Institute for Public Co-operation of Child Development for looking at issues pertaining to children.

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