TIRUNELVELI: Based on the suicide note left by a 12-year-old schoolgirl, who had ended her life by jumping from the rooftop of the house last Sunday, the Palayamkottai police on Wednesday booked the class teacher for alleged period shaming. She had upbraided the girl for staining the uniform with menstrual fluid inside the classroom.
The 26-year-old teacher has been charged with abetment to suicide (IPC section 306). The police, however, sought to give it a different spin, saying the suicide did not have a menstruation angle but was because of frequent scolding by the teacher for her poor academic performance. Speaking to Express, Inspector Periyasamy of Palayamkottai police station who is the Investigation Officer (IO) of the case, said, “Among the 52 students from Class VII, we spoke to all 11 girl students to know more about the alleged menstruation incident.
Neither of them mentioned it. As the victim claimed her teacher was torturing her, we have altered the case from suicide to abetment of suicide.” Also the FIR did not mention the name of the teacher as the suicide note did not name her.
However, sources in the District Child Protection Unit told Express period shaming indeed happened last Thursday. “After she experienced menstruation in the classroom, the teacher sent her out with a stern rebuke. The school management did not even provide a sanitary napkin citing non-availability of an ayah (nanny) and just gave her a piece of cloth to use. We have also learned that the victim was depressed as one of her classmates said she had shared her intention of committing suicide,” the source said.
In the suicide note, she said: “Did I ever get reported when I was in Class VI? Then why is my Class VII teacher complaining about me? I don’t have any option. I must die.”