Bengaluru school headmistress, husband held in child molestation case

Bengaluru: The headmistress of a private school and her husband were arrested here on Thursday in connection with the alleged molestation of a three-year-old pre-nursery student by its security guard, a senior police official said.

“We have taken school headmistress Shirley Soujanya and its trust secretary and her husband Anil Kumar into custody under sections 188 and 336 of the Indian Penal Code for failing to protect the victim and implement the safety guidelines,” city additional police commissioner P. Harishekharan told reporters here.

Accused guard Gautam, 25, was arrested on Tuesday under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and section 376 of the IPC a day after the child`s parents filed a police complaint about the crime that occured on the school campus on Monday.

“The school management violated the mandatory guidelines enforced last year by employing the accused without a background check and disobeying order of a public servant (police commissioner) in ensuring safety and security of the students,” Harishekharan said.

The alleged sexual assault came to light when the victim complained to her parents of abdominal pain on returning home from school on Monday afternoon.

According to preliminary investigation, the guard was working in the school for four years and resides on school premises with his wife, an attendant in the same school.

“The victim`s elder sister, who also studies in the school, told her parents that the guard would often call her younger sister by name, fondle her and give chocolates to both of them,” Harishekharan recalled.