New Delhi: The lapses by cops in probing a sexual assault case of a minor allegedly by her teacher inside the classroom, have drawn flak from a Delhi court which has directed senior police officers, the school principal and several teachers to appear before it.
The prosecution version created “doubt” on the genuineness of the investigation as the police claimed that the 13-year-old girl was repeatedly sexually assaulted by her father, while the victim takes a firm stand that her perpetrator was her class teacher at a government school here.
“All these aspects need to be deliberated upon. There appears to be total lack of supervision on part of superior officers of the district in flagrant violation of the ‘Sakshi’ guidelines promulgated by the Supreme Court. This is a very serious lapse,” Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav said.
The court directed then DCP (outer district), concerned ACP, SHO and other officials of Aman Vihar police station to be present before it on February 14, to explain the position.
It also directed the investigating officer of the case to bring before it all the teachers and principal, who had signed a letter containing alleged confession of the girl’s father that he had repeatedly sexually assaulted the minor.
The court noted that the letter was purportedly prepared by accused teacher Manoj Rathi in the presence of some teachers and was later brought to the notice of the principal.
“Either the document was a forged one or if it was a genuine document then as per the mandate of Section 21 of POCSO Act, all these persons should have reported the matter to the police.
“Yet no action in the matter was taken against the accused (teacher), other four teachers as well as the principal in whose notice the facts had come. The matter has not been investigated from the angle as to whether this letter was fraudulently prepared so as to create a defence by the accused in connivance with other teachers,” the court observed.
The incident occurred in August last year when the girl, a Class V student of an MCD school in Aman Vihar, posed a query to the teacher who asked her to meet him alone later.
The girl said in her complaint that the teacher allegedly molested her and when her parents came to school next day to complain about his conduct, he threatened them and took thumb impression of the child’s father on a blank paper.
Later, the teacher allegedly wrote a confession letter on behalf of the girl’s father that he had repeatedly sexually assaulted his daughter and got signatures of other colleagues.
The girl’s father had alleged that he was thrashed by the accused and his colleagues and asked not to contact school authorities or police in the matter.
Later, a case was registered by the police against the accused teacher under provisions of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.
The court, in its order, noted the alleged confession letter was within the SHO’s knowledge who “illegally ignored” it and did not carry out the legal procedure.
“It is also apparent from the case diary that SHO had pressurised the IO to file the charge sheet against the accused showing him without arrest. This aspect creates doubt about the fairness of the investigation in the matter.
“Particularly in the light of consistent statements of child victim with regard to commission of sexual assault upon her by the accused as it finds mention in the complaint, her statement before the magistrate and the proceedings which took place before Child Welfare Committee,” the judge said.