Parents of those studying at the government high school of Farain Kalan village in Jind district now dread sending their children to school.
Reason: a teacher of the school was arrested on Thursday for allegedly raping a Class-9 girl and the headmaster on Saturday for allegedly suppressing the issue.
Studies of nearly 750 students would be affected for the third consecutive day on Monday.
The panchayats of Farain Kalan and Farain Khurd villages had locked the school, which also housed the government primary school for boys and girls, located on the outskirts of Farain Kalan on Thursday.
The residents of both the villages barged into the school on Thursday and thrashed the accused teacher identified as Rajinder Singh, a social science teacher, and forced the school staff out before locking it.
Madan Pal, husband of sarpanch Sheila Devi of Farain Kalan, said: “We want the entire school staff to be replaced and action against all other teachers who knew about the rape incident but tried to suppress it.”
Police had arrested headmaster Sadhu Ram after Jind deputy commissioner (DC) ML Kaushik met the protesters in the village on Saturday.
On education minister Geeta Bhukkal's assurance of replacing the teaching staff and strict action against those found guilty, Madan Pal said: “No amount of assurance will be able to convince us till we actually see the old staff being replaced.”
“Besides new teaching fraternity, we want a new and separate building for all girls, who comprise nearly half of the student population, of the two villages with all female staff deputed,” he said, adding that till the villagers' demands were met, the school's lock would not be opened and studies would not be allowed to resume.
Condemning the rape incident, Nafe Singh Nain, president of the Binain khap, said: “We want a thorough probe in the matter wherein names of several teachers cropped up for suppressing the issue.”
He said that the khap panchayats also demanded strict action against the teacher found guilty in the case.
However, Jind DC ML Kaushik claimed that the issue had been resolved and studies at the Farain Kalan school would resume on Monday.