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24 Sep 2020, Edition - 1899, Thursday

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Coimbatore

Suicide note of harassed teen accuses Childline of inaction

Covai Post Network

In a fresh turn of events, the suicide letter written by 14-year-old Babu said that, even after complaining to Childline, the agency had reportedly not taken any action in his issue.

The victim, N. Babu, a Class IX student of the Corporation P. Kamalanathan Memorial Higher Secondary School in Venkitapuram, committed suicide at his residence early on Tuesday, after he was allegedly beaten up frequently by three teachers at the school.

Even as the parents of the victim complained that no action was taken against the teachers in spite of a verbal complaint that was made to the headmaster of the school, the suicide note allegedly left behind by the boy said that Childline too had failed to act, after he complained.

In the suicide note, Babu had written that, unable to bear the continuous beatings of the teachers, he had filed a formal complaint with the Childline, using a phone booth at a bus stop. But the complaint had fallen on deaf ears.

“The Childline official said that he would look into the incident, but no actions were taken against the teachers, and the beatings continued,” the letter read.

Babu had also mentioned that he got the idea to complain with the helpline number after attending an orientation session conducted by a police official.

In the three-page letter, Babu had explained how the English phrase, “What is your problem?” had created all the trouble. “I asked that question to a student who was getting beaten up by teacher Kandhaiyah. But the teacher thought I had asked him. Later two more teachers, Karthick and Gunaseelan, beat me up continuously,” Babu had written.

However, denying the allegation made in the letter, a representative from the Coimbatore Childline clarified that they did not receive any complaint from the boy regarding harassment and corporal violence at school.

“We note down all the complaints. There was no call from the boy. We would have informed the concerned officials if there was a complaint, and inspection would have been carried out immediately,” the representative added.

Meanwhile, a higher official from the Police Department said that the letter will be sent to the forensic lab in Chennai to confirm if it was indeed written by the boy.

“We have verified the handwriting with a notebook used by the boy and there are similarities. We are waiting for confirmation,” said the official.

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