Tikiri teacher succumbs to burn injuries - The New Indian Express

Tikiri teacher succumbs to burn injuries

Published: 02nd November 2013 11:04 AM

Last Updated: 02nd November 2013 11:04 AM

Battling for life for five days, Itisree Pradhan, a school teacher, who was set ablaze for refusing to withdraw a complaint of molestation in Rayagada district, died on Friday.

The teacher, posted in an upper primary school at Tikiri and admitted to a hospital in Visakhapatnam with 90 per cent burns after being set on fire by an unidentified person on Sunday night, died during the day. With the death sparking a Statewide outcry, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik  ordered a Crime Branch probe into the incident.

Besides, the inspector in-charge of Tikiri police station, Sujit Kumar Sai, has been placed under suspension for dereliction of duty.

The ASI in the Tikiri police station, M D Pradhan, had also been suspended for his failure to arrest School Inspector Netranand Dandasena, against whom the lady teacher had filed a sexual harassment case on July 18. The teacher was rushed to the Visakhapatnam hospital after she was set on fire by the unidentified person on October  27.

The Chief Minister, who announced a compensation of `10 lakh for the family of the deceased, said the trial of the case would be conducted in a fast track court.

Itisree, who hailed from Delang in Puri district, joined as Sikshya Sahayika at the school. Unable to tolerate sexual  harassment, Itisree lodged a complaint with the police in July, but there was no response.

Later, Itisree appealed to the State Women’s Commission, the DGP, the Collector and the SP of Rayagada, but to no avail. On the other hand, pressure mounted on her to withdraw the complaint allegedly by  Dandasena’s associates.

The district administration and police  swung into action after Itisree was rushed to Vizag hospital.  Dandasena, who was absconding, was arrested in Ichchapur on AP-Odisha border.

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