On Monday, the Madhya Pradesh Police arrested a Missionary school principal for assaulting and sexually exploiting minor girl students residing in the hostel premises of the school in Junwani village, Dindori. While the police have arrested the principal, an FIR has also been registered against two teachers and the hostel warden who are absconding at present.
According to the reports, the principal who has been arrested has been identified as Nan Singh. The incident is said to have happened in the JDES Missionary school in Junwani village. The matter came to light when around eight girls residing in the hostel filed a complaint at the Dindori women’s police station under the POCSO act.
This is after the State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (SCPCR) inspected the JDES hostel where around 600 students are residing. “When we visited the hostel, which is located in a forest, we found the students in very bad condition. During the discussion, eight girl students from classes 6 to 12 informed that the principal and the teacher used to touch their body parts by calling them alone in the classroom,” SCPCR member Omkar Singh said.
He added that the girls were in a bad state of mind and revealed that they were sexually exploited for past many years. “Some boys also hinted towards harassment with them, but they didn’t reveal much,” Singh added. According to Singh, the students have been sent to counselling and more details would be revealed as the investigation proceeds.
After the inspection, Singh and his team helped the girls to register a police complaint against the school and its teachers and principal. Singh meanwhile also stated that there are several such schools in Madhya Pradesh where students are forced to face assaults and sexual exploitation.
CWC Dindori chairperson Dhanya Kumari Vaish also commented on the matter and said that the students at the JDES missionary school hostel were beaten with canes and were made to eat stale food. “The girl students were very scared. After counselling for hours, the girl students informed me that the principal and school teachers used to do obscene acts. More details may emerge after counselling,” she added.
Dindori superintendent of police (SP) Sanjay Singh said that the police have arrested the school principal and have launched a manhunt to nab two teachers and the hostel warden booked in the case. The three are at present absconding. He confirmed that an FIR was registered in the Women’s Police Station under sections 354, 354 A(1), 323, 34 of the IPC, sections 7, 8 of the POCSO Act, and sections 75, 82 of the Juvenile Justice Act.
प्रकरण में महिला थाने में अपराध क्रमांक 0/23 धारा 354,354 क (1),323,34 आईपीसी 7,8 पॉक्सो एक्ट ,75,82 किशोर न्याय अधि. की FIR दर्ज हो चुकी है, जिसमे प्रिंसिपल और अतिथि शिक्षक सहित 4 लोग हैं। तथा विवेचना दौरान आरोपी प्रिंसिपल को गिरफ्तार भी किया गया है|@dindoridm @CMMadhyaPradesh https://t.co/rcXnrqEGGG
— Dindori_SP (@dindori_sp) March 4, 2023
Notably, after the complaint, several students of the school protested against the police and demanded the release of the school principal saying that the latter was wrongly charged in the case. Also, the spokesperson of the Gondwana Ganatantra Party Radheshyam Kokadiya objected to the case and alleged that BJP and RSS were deliberately conspiring against the missionary. He said that the BJP didn’t want the development of the tribal children.
He also defended the school and blatantly accused an 11th-class girl student of having a “bad character”. Reports mention that he also publicly named the girl to defame her.
Priyank Kanoongo, chairperson of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights took cognizance of the event and demanded strict action against Kokadiya. He said that Kokadiya was issuing threats to him and was helping the JDES Missionary school whose teacher and principal have been accused of sexually assaulting its girl students.
डिंडोरी म.प्र. में कल बच्चों को एक मिशनरी संस्था से रेस्क्यू किया था,दबंग राधेश्याम कोकड़िया ने CWC अध्यक्ष को धमकी दी है,बच्चों का यौन शोषण करने वालों की मदद करने के लिए दबाव बना रहा है।@NCPCR_ संज्ञान ले कर कार्यवाही कर रहा है पुलिस को FIR करने हेतु निर्देश दिए जा रहे हैं
— प्रियंक कानूनगो Priyank Kanoongo (@KanoongoPriyank) March 5, 2023
The case in the matter has been filed under sections 354, 354 A(1), 323, 34 of the IPC and sections 7, 8 of the POCSO Act, and sections 75, 82 of the Juvenile Justice Act. The Police have arrested the JDES missionary school principal and are searching for its two teachers and a hostel warden, absconding in the case.