Chandigarh court awarded five years’ rigorous imprisonment to two teachers of a government school for molesting girl students.
The court has also imposed a fine of Rs 50,000 on each of the accused, identified as Mukesh Kumar (32) and Ashok Kumar (54), who taught at Government Model Senior Secondary School in Dadu Majra, Sector 38 West. The fine imposed on the accused would be distributed equally among the four complainants.
Taking a strict note of their actions, the court said the accused were teachers and thus their actions could not be taken lightly as crimes against women were on the rise.
The accused were convicted by the court on September 25 under Section 10 of the POCSO Act and Sections 354(Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and 354-A (sexual harassment) of the IPC
Junior Basic Training (JBT) teacher Mukesh Kumar and Ashok Kumar, who taught economics, were booked on August 7 last year for molesting girl students. While Mukesh was arrested a day after he was booked, Ashok was held on September18 last year.
Four girls, all students of Class 12, had accused four teachers of sexual harassment, but the education department probe indicted two of them and a case was then registered against them.
Out of the four complainants, three turned hostile, but one stood by her statement, leading to the conviction of the accused. A total of 11 witnesses recorded their statements in the case. As per the statement of the complainants, accused used to misbehave with them and looked for an opportunity to touch them in an inappropriate manner.
Even when Ashok Kumar was the disciplinary in-charge at the school, he was accused of using abusive language with the complainants. As per the complaint, the accused used to lure the girls by promising them desired marks in exams if the latter accompanied them to club or to fast food joints. The accused even asked them not to bother even attempting questions in exams. The girls alleged that the accused used obscene language and even asked them to visit them at home for tuitions.
Initially, the girls approached the principal with a complaint against the accused teachers, but no action was taken. The case was registered after the girls and their families approached the police in the wake of the failure of the school management as well as the education department to act against the accused. Disturbed with the order, accused Ashok Kumar claimed he was falsely implicated in the case under a conspiracy.