Bengal faced another day of shame on Tuesday, with reports emerging of a private tutor raping an eight-year-old girl in the North 24-Parganas and the arrest of the principal of a school on Park Street on charges of molesting a Class 12 student.
The twin shockers come within 10 days of the National Crime Records Bureau declaring Bengal the worst state in the country in terms of crimes against women and the high-profile protests against the rape and murder of a young woman at Kamduni, in Barasat.
On Tuesday afternoon, Shakespeare Sarani police arrested Bernard Shaw Halder, principal of the Seventh Day Adventist Day School on Park Street, for molesting one of his charges.
“The accused will be produced in court on Wednesday,” Vishal Gorgue, deputy commissioner (South), Kolkata Police, said. Halder has been charged under Section 354 of the IPC.
The student complained that after classes ended on Tuesday, the principal called her to his room on the pretext of giving her a private lesson. “He started making indecent proposals and, when I objected, he held me tightly and started kissing me. He molested me and I somehow managed to extricate myself from his grip,” the girl said in her police complaint.
“On receiving the complaint, we immediately arrested the principal,” Pijush Kundu, officer-in-charge of the Shakespeare Sarani police station, said.
About 35 km from Kolkata, the police arrested Chhotu Das, 25, for allegedly raping an eight-year-old girl at his North 24Parganas residence on Tuesday. “We’ve arrested Das and slapped Section 376 of the IPC against him,” Subhankar Bhattacherjee, additional deputy commissioner of police, Barrackpore, said. According to the police, Das is the victim’s private tutor. After he finished his coaching class on Tuesday, Das asked the other students leave and then raped the victim.
“After returning from the teacher’s house, the student fell ill. Quizzed by her guardians, the child narrated what her teacher had done to her. As the news spread, locals dragged Das out of his home and beat him up,” a police officer said.