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‘Threatened’ with closure, Ghaziabad school settles row with politician

Principal reaches compromise with aspiring MLA who had demanded Rs 2.2 lakh for damage to his car by the school bus

noida Updated: Oct 19, 2016 12:28 IST
Peeyush Khandelwal
Peeyush Khandelwal
Hindustan Times
Raj Nagar,Schiller Institute Senior Secondary School,Dishant Tyagi
The principal of Schiller Institute Senior Secondary School in Raj Nagar said he had to keep the school closed on Monday after heated exchanges with the politician over the issue.(Sakib Ali/HT Photo)

Following the closure of Schiller Institute Senior Secondary School in Raj Nagar on Monday in the aftermath of a minor accident between its school bus and a politician’s car, both parties finally reached a compromise on Tuesday evening.

On October 14, one of the school’s buses had scraped the Mitsubishi Montero SUV belonging to Samajwadi Party candidate from Muradnagar in the upcoming UP assembly polls Dishant Tyagi, for which he demanded damages of Rs. 2.2 lakh.

School principal AK Gupta said on Tuesday morning that he had to keep the school closed on Monday after heated exchanges with Tyagi over the issue as the latter had demanded almost Rs. 2.2 lakh for repairs from the school.

“Following the incident, we had offered to pay up to Rs 20,000 for repairs, but the estimate of Rs 2.2 lakh was too much. Following repeated calls and demands, Tyagi also threatened to come to the school with 500 people and even said he could get the school shut . Fearing escalation, we sent messages to all parents about the school remaining shut and also sent messages to police officials and the Election Commission of India ,” said Gupta.

“We sent messages to parents describing the situation, the threats and our communication with the Ghaziabad police. We also filed a written complaint at Kavi Nagar police station on October 15. After an assurance by the police on Monday evening, we opened the school on Tuesday,” he said.

On Tuesday morning, Gupta also shared the call recordings, stamped police complaint and his e-mails sent to the district magistrate, senior superintendent of police and the election commission and said the police did not register his FIR.

On Tuesday afternoon, superintendent of police (SP), city, Salmantaj Patil directed the Kavi Nagar station house officer to immediately look into the issue, after he was informed about the matter. Following media intervention, Tyagi too gave his version of events to media persons and said he had not threatened Gupta.

Later, the SP said that when the police approached Gupta on October 18, “He said he does not wish to lodge an FIR and will sort out the matter amicably.”

Finally, on Tuesday evening, Gupta and Tyagi said they had reached a compromise.

“The school principal has apologised over the incident. In fact, there was no threat from me,” said Samajwadi Party leader Dishant Tyagi. “I just demanded the amount for repair of my car, the parts of which are expensive. It needed immediate repair as I use it daily. A staff member from the school was also sent to the workshop to get an estimate of the repair cost prepared. Despite repeated assurances, when the school principal refused to bear the expenses on account of repair, I got annoyed,” Tyagi said. “What can I do if demanding the amount for the damage is termed a threat? I have to contest elections and can’t press too much for money if they do not pay. The principal did not behave like a sophisticated person.”

On his part, the school principal said that police officials had brought Tyagi for a compromise.

“A compromise was reached between the two of us. Now, the matter stands resolved. We paid Rs 20,000 for the damage caused to his vehicle,” he said.

First Published: Oct 19, 2016 01:07 IST