Kathua Student Assault: Teacher And Principal Booked, J&K Parties Hail Prompt Action

A student has alleged that he was assaulted by his teacher and principal after he wrote 'Jai Shri Ram' on the board.


Representative photograph of Jammu and Kashmir Police

After the principal and a teacher of a government school in the Bani area of Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua district were booked for beating a class 10 student for writing “Jai Shri Ram” on the blackboard, political parties welcomed swift police action. They sought the same punishment for incidents happening in other states.

“Hate mongers won't even spare kids when it comes to their venomous mindset. Appreciate the prompt action taken by the Kathua police in filing an FIR. Odd that in the UP case, police are pressuring the child’s father to drop charges against the teacher who encouraged students to thrash him,” former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti tweeted.


On August 26, protests took place in the Bani area against the incident. Supported by political parties, including ex-MLA Bani Jeevan Lal, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers and Congress party members sought swift action against the accused. During the protest at Bani Mela Ground, protesters demanded the immediate suspension of the school teacher and the principal and called for their arrest.

Lal sought strict action against both accused teachers, saying that Bani is known for communal harmony and no one should be allowed to create communal tension in the area. 

“For centuries, both communities have been living here together and never has such an incident taken place,” said Lal.


During the protest, the Kathua district administration assured protesters of strict action against the accused after recording the injured student's statement. The student had sustained injuries and had been admitted to the Sub-District Hospital in Bani. In a viral video, the injured student is heard saying he was first beaten by the teacher and then by the principal.

The school principal, Mohd Hafiz, and teacher Farooq Ahmed were booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (intentional insult), 506 (criminal intimidation), 342 (wrongful confinement), and Section 75 (cruelty to a child) of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act. The SDM Kathua told reporters that the incident took place on August 25.

The Deputy Commissioner of Kathua, Rakesh Minhas, has constituted a three-member inquiry committee headed by the Sub-divisional magistrate (SDM) of Bani to probe the incident. The other two members of the committee include the Deputy Chief Education Officer of the Kathua region and the principal of the government school HSS Kharote. The DC has directed the committee to submit the report within two days and also to “assign responsibility against the culprits regarding the incident”.