Ghaziabad: GD Goenka School admin claims student death was an accident
School officials primarily maintained that the incident was ‘an accident’ but dodged a number of questions raised by media persons.noida Updated: Aug 12, 2017 22:19 IST
Nearly 12 days after class 4 student Arman Seghal died after a fall in GD Goenka School, Indirapuram, the school management said that the incident was an accident and swept aside several queries, on the basis that the case is sub judice.
Arman’s parents have lodged an FIR against school officials under sections of culpable homicide not amounting to murder and destruction of evidence.
School officials primarily maintained that the incident was ‘an accident’ but dodged a number of questions raised by media persons.
“The teacher who is an eyewitness told us that it was an accident and we told police the same. We did not meet Arman’s parents as people told us that there was a mob and we were concerned about our safety. We want a cordial relationship with everyone to run the school. We will fully cooperate with the police for the investigation,” said Ankur Malhotra, a school director, who came to the school following the incident.
However, Malhotra declined to accept any moral responsibility for the incident. “There is no moral responsibility. It is just an accident and I cannot control an accident,” he added.
The school is shut since August 3 and the school authorities said that it will reopen on August 16. Five school officials are presently contesting a petition at the Allahabad high court to get a stay of arrest and get the FIR quashed.
Their lawyer, Akhand Pratap Singh, said that the school officials contesting the petition are Dr Kavita Sharma, the principal, Ankur Malhotra, school director, Joginder Dua, director & manager and Deepak Tuteja, deputy manager. However, Singh did not reveal the fifth name. Singh added that the police served them a notice for recording statements (under Section 160 of CrPC) only on Friday.
The school principal, Dr Sharma, maintained that she was not in school when the incident took place and was away to see a doctor. “Midway, I got information and directly reached the hospital. Our staff had rushed the child to the hospital but he did not survive. We took all possible measures from our side,” she said.
A number of questions were also raised about the absence of CCTV camera on the second-floor corridor where the incident took place, as the school has other areas under CCTV camera surveillance.
“We had no camera there; maybe, we didn’t feel the need. It is not required as per law but we have installed it at other places. So far, the police have not called me about the incident. We will meet the parents and seek their views about any shortcomings, which will be addressed,” Malhotra said.
Sources had said that the school had facilitated the police in taking the statements of students. Singh, however, declined to comment and said that it was the prerogative of the police to record statements of people they think fit.
Questions were also raised about the expired medicines and non-functional flow meter of the oxygen cylinder in the school’s medical room, but the school officials cut short the press meet at this point and declined further comments.
On Friday, the Allahabad high court issued directions to keep any coercive action in abeyance until August 28, the next hearing.