Five days after a Visva-Bharati hostel warden shocked the country by making a 10-year old student lick her urine, the university registrar issued a statement of apology on Thursday.
“The university unequivocally regrets the traumatic experience of of a Patha Bhavana student Puneeta Singh at the hands of the warden Ms Uma Poddar…. The university further assures the parents of Puneeta Singh (and all other parents of Patha Bhavana children) that such instances will not occur,” read the three paragraph notice signed by the registrar.
Incidentally when the registrar Manimukut Mitra visited the residence of the girl on Wednesday with the principal of the school, they did not express a word of regret.
Vice-chancellor Sushanta Duttagupta, who held a press conference on the incident on July 9, too did not apologise.
On Thursday the parents of Singh appeared before the four-member enquiry committee set up by the university.
On July 7, Punita Mistri (Singh), a class five student of Patha Bhavana at the Karabi hostel was forced to lick her own urine as punishment for bed-wetting.
Soon after the news spread, there was outrage across the nation and the office of the prime minister also asked the authorities of the Visva Bhatati for explanation.
On Wednesday night, the local sub-divisional-officer (SDO) went to the residence of the student as directed by the state Human Rights commission and talked to the parents for 45 minutes.
The statement of the registrar also said the university has decided to overhaul the warden matron system prevailing in the school for years.
It would explore avenues of upgrading it to standards befitting a central university.
After days on intense media pressure, the registrar also said they are committed to holistic education in the highest traditions set by Tagore. The poet founded the school in 1901.