A day after a Class 8 boy was found lying unconscious on the ground at DAV Public School, Pakhowal Road, the parents of the 13-year-old have refused to comment saying they were only concerned about their child’s recovery.
Even the school authorities were mum over the incident in which Atharva Gupta of Class 8 allegedly jumped off the sixth floor of the school building. There were reports that he fell from the third floor.
SOI zonal president visits Arthav
However, on Friday, Meetpal Singh Dugri, director, youth development board and zonal president of Students Organisation of India, visited Atharva who is in the ICU at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH).
Dugri claimed that DAV students had approached him on the SOI helpline and through the social networking site Facebook. “The students want action against teachers who forced the boy to take such a step,” he said, adding, “I got to know from the students that Atharva was thrashed and humiliated by some teachers because he was found talking to a girl student. The teachers threatened him with rustication for talking to her and also forced him to write an apology.”
Dugri further said he tried meeting the school authorities but they refused to discuss the issue. He claimed that the authorities were pressurising him to not pursue the matter. Dugri also met the commissioner of police Jatinder Singh Aulakh and requested him to take appropriate action.
No school for Classes 6 to 12
The school was closed on Friday for the students of Classes 6 to 12. A Class 12 teacher, requesting anonymity, said, “The students are extremely traumatised. The mid-year examinations are on in the school owing to which even the junior wing, comprising students till Class 5, was present.”
She further added, “Atharva’s news came to us when we were conducting the Class 8 oral examination. While he is quite sincere, I feel stress prompted him to take such an extreme step.”
Atharva Gupta was found lying unconscious on the ground floor of the school at 9am on Thursday. An electrician working in a block under construction noticed him and immediately raised an alarm. Atharva was rushed to hospital. The school staff claimed that no one had seen him falling from the building. The school authorities said he could have fallen from the stairs. However, there are allegations that the student jumped off the sixth floor.
Assistant sub-inspector Balkar Singh said the boy’s parents told police that they will record a statement only after the boy gained consciousness.
Friends pray for 13-year-old
Post the incident, the students of DAV Public School, Pakhowal Road, took to social media in support of their friend. Nikhil Sharma, a Class 12 student, said, “He is part of our cricket team and an excellent student as well. He secured 98% in Class 7,” adding, “Atharva was appointed the captain of the under-14 cricket team and was to play in the state cricket tournament in the coming week. When we came to know of his condition, it took us some time to believe it but we have been here at the hospital to pray for his speedy recovery.” Another student, Harsh, added, “We all have put his picture as our profile pictures on various social networking sites. We are glad that his condition has improved and are hopeful that he will soon be on the grounds with us again.”