Kerala girl who jumped from school building due to alleged harassment, dies

Gowri had jumped off the third floor of her school building allegedly after being censured by two teachers.

Published: 23rd October 2017 10:19 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th October 2017 11:13 AM   |  A+A-

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By Express News Service

KOLLAM: A Class X student of Trinity Lyceum School at Fatima Road here — who had jumped off the third floor of the school building last Friday —succumbed to injuries on Monday.

Gowri, 15, of Ramankulangara, is learnt to have breathed her last around 2.30 am at a private hospital in Thiruvananthapuram.

After post-mortem at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital, the body was brought to her native place where a large number of people, including her classmates, paid their last respects. Following the funeral rites, the body was cremated at Mulamkadakam crematorium.

Gowri had jumped off the third floor of her school building allegedly after being censured by two teachers. As per reports, the girl had questioned a punishment slapped on her younger sister, a Class VIII student of the same school, as the latter was made to sit along with boys.

A war of words between Gowri and a group of students from the younger sister’s class led to the intervention of two teachers — Sindhu and Crescent— who reportedly censured Gowri in the staff room.

On condition of anonymity, a friend of Gowri told Express, “In the staff room, Sindhu, the class teacher of Class VIII, hurled abusive words against Gowri and also beat her. Even her class teacher, Crescent, didn’t intervene. Immediately after the ordeal, Gowri rushed to the LP block and jumped from its third floor.”

The Kollam West Police had earlier charged the two teachers with section 305 (abetment of suicide of child), section 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) and section 511 (punishment for attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or other imprisonments). They were also charged with section 75 (punishment for cruelty to child) of  the Juvenile Justice Act.

Girl’s family comes out against police

The girl’s family has come out against the police citing their inability to arrest the teachers even four days after the incident. The cops said the teachers, who are trying to move an anticipatory bail application in the Kerala High Court, may be somewhere in Kochi. The girl’s family has also raised allegation over the callousness on the part of Benziger Hospital, which had first treated the girl.

“After the incident around 1.30 pm, Gowri was first rushed to Benziger Hospital where she was admitted for two-three hours. The doctors informed us her injuries were not grave and said she had only fractured her hands and legs. If they had diagnosed her critical condition and provided timely medical assistance, she could have been saved,” said a family member. Benziger Hospital’s administrative officer Remeyel Yesudas refuted the allegations.

“The girl was at the hospital for about two hours. As soon as she was brought here, our neurosurgeon attended to her and termed her condition as critical. Though the neurosurgeon advised the family not to shift her in such a condition, they remained adamant on shifting her,” he said.

It is learnt the family is planning to approach Fisheries Minister J Mercykutty Amma demanding action against the hospital.  Earlier, protest marches called by various student outfits towards the school turned violent as police resorted to baton charge and firing of tear gas shells. Six policemen and two journalists suffered minor injuries in the scuffle. The police said two SFI activists were arrested and a case has been registered against 100 SFI activists and 50 KSU activists. In protest against the police action, various student outfits have called a students’ strike on Tuesday.

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