August 26, 2011


Times of India

Notice to home secretary in sexual abuse case

MADURAI: Taking exception to the non-filing of a counter affidavit by the state home secretary, as to whether a state-level commission equivalent to the Commission for Protection of Child Rights Act 2006, has been constituted, the Madurai bench of the Madras high court has directed him to file the affidavit by September 7.

Justice R Sudhakar gave the direction to the home secretary while hearing a petition to decide the issue of whether the investigation in the alleged sexual assault of a girl by a school headmaster, be handed over to some other agency from the police.

On July 27, the judge, after hearing a matter pertaining to the headmaster, who allegedly committed sexual abuse on girl children, directed the home secretary to file a report by August 12, as to whether the commission has been constituted.

However, when the matter came up for hearing on Wednesday, the judge found that the official had not filed the counter affidavit.

In a petition, the father of the girl submitted that on July 12, his daughter came back from school disturbed and depressed. Upon repeated enquiries by his wife and the neighbouring women, she confided in them that Arockiasamy, the headmaster of the school, had misbehaved with her. On further enquiries with some of her schoolmates, the children shocked everyone saying that Arockiasamy had been subjecting them to physical abuse for the past two years.

He also contended in the petition that a girl who was studying in class 8 shared painfully that when she approached the headmaster for school admission in 2010 along with her grandmother who is visually challenged, he misbehaved with her taking advantage of the situation. When the girl tried to resist, he threatened her that he would not give her admission, he added.

Following protests by the parents, Arockiasamy was suspended, but not arrested. Hence, the petitioner preferred the present petition seeking to transfer of the investigation, as the police has not arrested him.

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