Kakinada: “Are you getting your periods regularly,” the principal of a residential school asked a 13-year-old student after he suspected that she was having an affair with a teacher. Principal C.H. Sunder Rao even sent the school nurse to accompany the student to check whether she was telling the truth.
The student complained to local legislator Vanthada Rajeswari when she inspected the tribal welfare girls residential school in Zaddangi in the agency area of East Godavari district on Sunday.
Speaking of the incident, Ms Rajeshwari said, “The student was upset and said she was followed and checked. She complained that the officials had conducted a ‘pregnancy test’ on her. This is not correct. How can minor girls be subjected to such indecent behaviour?”
Other students also complained that they were being followed and a record of their menstrual cycles was being maintained by the nurse at the behest of the principal, Ms Rajeshwari said.
The 13-year-old student claimed that she had orally complained to the mandal education officer and the assistant tribal welfare officer but no action was taken.
Tribal welfare deputy director Manikumar stated that an inquiry would be held and action taken against the school principal if the charge was proved.
Mr Manikumar conducted an oral inquiry and said, “No such tests were done in the school. There is no kit available in this area. How can such a test be conducted? The girls have been asked not to indulge in mischief and give wrong reports to public representatives.” Principal Sunder Rao could not be contacted.
Asked about the incident, Mr Balaraj, a member of the AP state commission for protection of child rights said an inquiry had been initiated. “Instructions have been sent to the district child protection unit of Kakinada to submit a detailed report on the incident as it is a serious child rights violation,” he said.