COIMBATORE: The Rural Police arrested a 52-year-old headmaster (in-charge) of a panchayat union primary school in Kinathukadavu Block for sexually harassing three girl students, on Wednesday. The suspect was booked under sections 9(f), (1), (m) and 10 of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act based on a complaint from Child Counsellor of District Child Protection Office, Santhamani. Sources state that the child counsellor, on Wednesday, held an inquiry with affected students who had stated that the headmaster had touched them inappropriately on multiple occasions with a bad intention.
The official then lodged a complaint on the suspect, following which a case was booked. The headmaster was arrested on Wednesday night. The girls who were harassed are currently in classes IV and V, said sources. According to the police, the suspect, during preliminary investigation, had reportedly revealed that he had sexually harassed three girls by touching them inappropriately. The suspect is now remanded under judicial custody in Coimbatore Central Prison.
On February 11 parents and the public staged a protest on Pollachi Road, demanding arrest of the headmaster alleging that he had sexually harassed several female students. In a turn of events, parents of affected students withdrew their complaint against the suspect on Wednesday morning. People in the know said that it was because of peer pressure from the police, who were said to be working in favour of the suspect. However, the issue gained momentum as several social organisations came together to support the victims, eventually leading to the headmaster’s arrest, said sources.