BENGALURU: A school was vandalised and several policemen were injured on Wednesday in violence that broke out after a teacher was accused of sexually abusing a seven-year-old student.
The incident came to light on Wednesday when the girl’s parents claimed they had found her reluctant to go to school. They marched up to the management, and demanded the teacher be handed over to them.
When the school, located in New Guddadahalli off Mysore Road, refused and called the police, the parents barged in and allegedly started beating up the 49-year-old physical education teacher in question.
As the news spread, hundreds of people started trooping in. Soon, the narrow road leading to the school was blocked. This, in turn, resulted in a two-hour traffic jam on Mysore Road.
Trouble started brewing around 9.15 am, minutes after the assembly. At 10 am, when police arrived, about 200 people had joined the parents and were protesting. The moment the police locked up the teacher and the staff inside the school to save them from the mob, the protesters started pelting stones and ransacked the school.
They set fire to three vehicles, including a media van and a police motorbike, parked outside the compound. The mob also smashed furniture in the classrooms and flung out computers and photo frames.
The presence of a 300-strong police force did not deter the mob. With a maze of buildings offering easy hiding places, the crowd pelted stones at the police and their vehicles.
In the melee, Additional Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Alok Kumar sustained injuries on his hand.
A constable carrying his walkie-talkie was severely injured as he tried to protect him from the mob.
DCP (West) Labhu Ram was roughed up too. Inspectors Prakash and Manjunath and ACP Santhyanarayana Kudur were also injured in the stone pelting.
A KSRP van which was sent away was recalled as the mob got aggressive. The police caned the mob and lobbed teargas shells twice.