Police investigation into the Khajuri Khas incident has concluded that “molestation” or “sexual assault” was not the reason behind the stampede.
Five girls were killed and many injured at a government school in East Delhi following a stampede on September 10. Over 1,400 boys and girls had come to take their mid-term exam at the school that day.
The police have recorded the statement of injured students admitted at Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital and also teachers and other staff present in the school on the day of the incident.
“Most of the injured students have told us that they were not molested by the boys. It was a confusion over shifting of classes that led to all the students talking the stairs at one go which led to a stampede,” said Dharmendra Kumar, joint commissioner of police (New Delhi).
However, the police blamed the narrow staircase inside the school premises as the main reason behind the stampede.
“Though the postmortem report is still awaited, bruises on the bodies of the injured girls do not suggest any sexual assault. Most of them are crush injuries and were sustained when the students jostled with each other on the narrow staircase,” said the officer.
On Monday, angry parents of girls who died in the tragedy assembled outside the school and shouted slogans against the school authorities.
Shamsiran, who lost her 16-year-old daughter Afroze in the stampede, alleged police inaction and attacked the policemen patrolling the area.
A heavy posse of policemen has been deployed in the area to take control of the situation.
Though the school remained closed on Monday, as investigations were still underway, several students turned up in the morning to take their mid-term examinations.
“We were not aware that the school was closed. There was no word from the school authorities. I was scared that I would miss my examinations, so I came,” said Lalita, a student of Class VII at Government Girls and Boys Senior Secondary School. Police said other schools in the area have also been closed and security has been beefed up.
“Six students are still admitted in the hospital. We would provide adequate security outside the school when it reopens on Tuesday,” said SS Yadav, Deputy Commissioner of Police (northeast).