Girls' death sparks police probe
Parents say they were driven to suicide
ucanews.com reporter, Shimla
October 1, 2012
Police filed a court complaint yesterday against a Catholic school in northern India for allegedly driving two of its students to suicide. The police action comes a week after the bodies of Nancy Thakur and Sakshi Thakur (no relation), both 11, were found near a cliff in Sanjauli in Shimla, the capital of Himachal Pradesh. “There is no doubt that the girls were under mental pressure. We are investigating the incident from every angle,” said Parveer Thakur, deputy superintendent of police. Earlier, police had said the girls appeared to have been run over by a vehicle. Police are waiting for an autopsy report and will elaborate after reviewing it, Thakur said. Principal Shyma Jose said the Grade 6 students were caught passing notes to each other during a test at the Jesus and Mary Convent school on September 24 and were found dead later that day. "The notes are with police now, and I do not know the content," Jose said. She said their teacher has been suspended pending the completion of the police investigation and school authorities have demanded a judicial probe into the matter. "The whole school is aggrieved and distressed. We are ready for any inquiry into it, even judicial," Jose said. The girls' parents say they were tormented by their class teacher and made to stand outside the class before the note-passing incident took place. They also accused the police of a slow investigation. Rajender Thakur, father of Nancy, alleged that police officials were buckling under political pressure as children of some high profile people are studying in the school. “The confession of the class teacher that she has hit the girls is prima facie enough evidence to take action against her,” he said. The deaths have triggered protest marches and candlelight vigils in the city demanding action against the school management.