88 girl students allegedly forced to undress in Arunachal Pradesh by teachers as punishment

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In a school in Arunachal Pradesh, students of a girls’ school were allegedly forced to undress by three teachers for writing vulgar words against the head teacher. The police said that 88 students of Class 6th and 7th of Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya, Tani Happa (New Sagalee) in Papum Pare district were led to humiliating treatment on November 23.

This issue came to light after the victims approached the All Sagalee Students Union (ASSU) on November 27, who later filed an FIR with the local police. As per the complaint, two assistant directors and a junior teacher forced 88 students to undress in front of other students after the recovery of a piece of paper having vulgar words against the head teacher and a girl student. On Wednesday,     Papum Pare Superintendent of Police Tumme Amo confirmed the filing of the FIR by ASSU. He added that the case has been shifted to the women police station here. “The officer-in-charge of the (women) police station said the victims and their parents along with the teachers will be interrogated before registering a case,” Amo said.

A release by APPDSU said that a team of APPDSU had met the teachers and students on Tuesday, and they found that an unidentified student has used vulgar words on a piece of paper referring the name of the head teacher and a girl student. It said that the teachers asked an explanation from all the 88 students of Classes VI and VII, who were later said to undress in front of other students as punishment. The APPDSU President Nabam Tado said that “The school authorities did not speak to the parents of the students before punishing them”. The Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) has criticized the event and said such “heinous act” by the teachers could impact the students.

They said in a statement, “Tempering with a child’s dignity is against the law as well as the constitution.” “To discipline, a student is an attitude, character, responsibility, and commitment of a teacher. Undressing a student is definitely not a corrective measure…Imposing such punishment is a total violation of child rights, and more likely it may accelerate the risk of child abuse,” the party added.

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