'This place is like hell': Navodaya Vidyalaya tribal student allegedly kills self in hostel, leaves 'note'

How did none of the 20-odd girls residing at the same hostel with my daughter notice the extreme act, asked the newly-joined Class 6 student's father, who alleged that this was a murder.

Published: 22nd July 2019 08:33 PM  |   Last Updated: 22nd July 2019 08:37 PM   |  A+A-

Student suicide, Student issue

For representational purposes (Express Illustrations)

By Express News Service

BHOPAL: Students and staff at the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in Dhamangaon area of Madhya Pradesh’s Dindori district woke up to a shocker on Monday.

A 11-year-old Class VI student and tribal girl Madhu Marawi, hanged herself within the premises of the Navodaya Vidyalaya’s hostel, leaving behind a suicide note purportedly written by her.

The suicide note written in Hindi mentions, “I wanted to become a teacher, I love my parents, uncle and aunties, brothers and sisters. I don’t like this place, I want a transfer certificate (TC) from the Dhamangaon Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya. Since the time I’ve come here, I feel I’ve come to hell.”

While the police and school administration claimed it a prima facie seems a case of suicide, the girl’s kin including her father Tiwari Singh Marawi and grandfather Bhupendra alleged that their daughter didn’t kill her self but could have been murdered.

“How did none of the 20-odd girls residing at the same hostel with my daughter notice this? It’s not my daughter’s writing on the suicide note which has been found from her dress. Even the paper on which the note was written isn’t from any of the diaries or notebooks that my daughter had. Even the matter of my daughter being found hanging to death wasn’t informed to us by the school administration, but was instead told to us over phone at around 6 am by the father of another girl who stayed with my daughter at the same hostel. She cannot kill herself, someone killed her. We’ve told this to the police and demand an in depth probe,” the girl’s father alleged.

The girl hailed from Bhimkundi village which comes under the village panchayat that also houses the native village of Madhya Pradesh minister for tribal affairs Omkar Singh Markam. Former MP minister and senior BJP leader Omprakash Dhurve rushed to the school to meet the kin of the deceased minor and demanded high-level probe into the matter.

The incident came to light when the other girls residing with her at the double-storied hostel within the school premises were shocked to see Madhu hanging through the railing of the staircase near the toilet with her dupatta (scarf) at around 5.30 am.

The matter was immediately reported to school administration, who reported it to the Shahpur police station.

“Prima facie it seems a case of suicide and based on the contents of the suicide note it seems, the girl was feeling homesick. The suicide note towards the end mentions about coming to this place is like coming to Narak (hell). The matter has presently been registered under Section 174 of CrPc for probe and the statements of school administration, other girl inmates of the hostel as well as the deceased girl’s family are being recorded,” Dindori district police superintendent ML Solanki said.

The shocking incident happened only three weeks after the girl was enrolled as a Class VI student in the school which follows a system of alternate schooling to gifted students in the country. “She was enrolled in the school on June 30 and stayed here for ten days thereafter. She was feeling homesick and ill, so she returned home for a couple of days and returned to school again. But owing to an inter-school sports meet in the school premises, the classes of Class VI and Class VII students (both boys and girls) were suspended till July 18. So, the girl like other students of two classes went home and returned on July 19 and was since then staying with other girls at the hostel,” school principal Subhash Mahobia said.

The Navodaya Vidyalaya system is a unique experiment unparalleled in the annals of school education in India and elsewhere. Its significance lies in the selection of talented rural children as the target group and the attempt to provide them with quality education comparable to the best in a residential school system. Such children are found in all sections of society, and in all areas including the most backward. These fully residential schools are run by Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti, New Delhi, an autonomous organization under the Department of School Education and Literacy, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India.

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