The Supreme Court has raised serious concerns regarding a recent distressing incident that unfolded in Uttar Pradesh's Muzaffarnagar district. The Supreme Court has expressed its disappointment with the Uttar Pradesh government, stating that the manner in which the incident transpired should deeply trouble the conscience of the state. In this incident, a school teacher was captured on video instructing students to slap one of their classmates. The incident, which occurred on August 24 and was widely shared on social media, sparked outrage and condemnation from various quarters.
In response to this troubling incident, the Supreme Court has issued several directives. First and foremost, it has ordered that the investigation into this matter be supervised by a senior IPS officer appointed by the state government. This officer is mandated to file a comprehensive report before the Supreme Court, ensuring a thorough examination of the case.
Additionally, the court has directed the state government to provide counseling to both the victim and the students who were involved in the incident. This counseling is to be conducted by professional counselors to address the psychological impact on these individuals.
Furthermore, the court has raised concerns about the state's compliance with the Right To Education Act, emphasizing that there appears to be a prima facie case of failure in upholding the act's provisions. This act aims to provide quality, free, and compulsory education to children up to 14 years without any discrimination based on caste, creed, or gender. The Supreme Court has requested a status report on the implementation of the RTE Act in schools across the state within four weeks.
The plea for a speedy investigation into this case was filed by Tushar Gandhi, the great-grandson of Mahatma Gandhi. The court had previously directed the Muzaffarnagar Superintendent of Police to provide a status report on the case and measures taken to protect the student and his parents. It had also issued notice to the Uttar Pradesh government, with a deadline for their response set for September 25.
The Supreme Court has made it clear that quality education cannot be achieved if a student is penalized solely on the basis of their community. It has stressed the importance of proper counseling for the victim and the students who were compelled to take part in the incident, asserting that the state cannot expect the child to continue in the same school under these circumstances.
In the video that went viral, the accused teacher, Tripta Tyagi, was seen instructing students to slap a 7-year-old Muslim boy. As the student cried, his classmates followed her instructions and slapped him, with the teacher encouraging them to do so. Tripta Tyagi defended her actions by describing it as a "minor issue," but she has been charged in connection with the incident. The boy's father has decided not to press charges against the school but has chosen to withdraw his child from that institution. The child and his parents have also received counseling from the child welfare committee.