Teacher charged for child battery

A father of a 7-year-old student studying in the Lhamoizingkha Central School has lodged a complaint against the English teacher for beating up his son on 1 May 2023.

The incident was reported to police on 2 May and accordingly a case has been investigated. The teacher (suspect) confessed to having beaten the student just because the victim was disturbing his class.

The beating is not a normal beating but both the legs of the 7-year-old child is covered in multiple and raised welts showing that the teacher used excessive force.

There were few students who got beaten, however, none of the parents came forward to lodge a complaint against the teacher. Police forwarded the case to court on 5 May and the suspect is on bail.

He was charged for child battery. As per section 215 of the The Child Care and Protection Act of Bhutan 2011, a person shall be guilty of the offence of battering a child, if a person purposely uses physical force or causes the child to be subjected to a physical force.

The section further states that, the offence of battering a child shall be a petty misdemeanor or a misdemeanor, if aggravated circumstances are present.

Meanwhile, the Officiating Vice Principal of the school said that one month prior to the incident they sensitized both teachers and students on the corporal punishment and other crime related issues. They advocated in collaboration with the councilors and police OC.

There are interventions in place and they are sure that the advocacy program was efficient wherein an example of real life scenario were cited, he said, adding that however, they are not sure of how and why the incident took place.

In addition, he said, “We kept reminding parents and teachers on the issue constantly. I have no say on such issues in the past but there were couple of parents who have approached the management complaining. This is the reason why we conducted advocacy on the matter.”

He further said that given the current scenario, in order to make conducive environment for the students they immediately changed their class teacher and subject teachers. All the necessary measures were put in place.

For now, they have not decided on the administrative action, he added.

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