3-year-old girl sexually assaulted at preschool in Punjab

Updated on Feb 27, 2020 01:02 AM IST

Principal’s husband arrested, had violated the child at least twice in past four months at preschool in Mohali district

Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Mohali

The husband of a private preschool principal was arrested on Wednesday for allegedly sexually assaulting a three-year-old student at least twice over a period of four months in Zirakpur. The 38-year-old accused teaches mathematics in a private school in Banur, and often visited the Zirakpur preschool — which is operating from a house — to oversee administrative works and ongoing renovations, said police.

The girl had complained to her parents four months back too, but they did not take up the matter further after assurances from the principal, said police.

The latest incident came to light on Wednesday morning, when the girl while being bathed by her mother told her that the accused had disrobed her in the school. The family then approached police and the childline was informed.

The victim’s family told police that she had complained about the accused disrobing her four months back too.

The parents at that time had approached the school principal, but she reportedly convinced them that the child had some misunderstanding, and even denied that her husband ever visited
the school or interacted with the students.

The accused has been arrested after a case was registered under Sections 354A (sexual harassment) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 10 (aggravated sexual assault) of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act at the Zirakpur police station.

“More sections might be added after medical examination of the child,” said childline project director Dr Sangeeta Jund.

Meanwhile, police said they would be talking to other students of the preparatory school and the Banur school where the accused teaches to ascertain whether he had exploited any other child.

‘We trusted the principal the first time’

“We should have approached the police the very first time our daughter complained to us four months back, but we trusted the principal,” said the victim’s mother. “At that time, we had decided to withdraw her from school, but the principal convinced us that it was a misunderstanding and did not refund the fee. So, we continued sending her to the same school.”

Girl identifies accused from among 15 men

Police said the child was able to identify the accused from among 15 men. Before arresting the accused, police showed her different pictures in sets of five to six, but each time she pointed to the accused even as his different pictures were used in these sets.

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