School principal, teacher arrested for ‘forcing students to clean septic tank’ in Karnataka

The Karnataka Police Sunday arrested a government school principal and a teacher for allegedly forcing students to clean a septic tank in Malur taluk under Kolar district.

The duo have been identified as Morarji Desai Residential School principal Bharathamma, and arts and crafts teacher Muniyappa. Following the arrests, three other employees of the school named in the FIR are absconding.

The police action came after a video went viral wherein a few students were seen cleaning the septic tank in the presence of the principal and a teacher. The video surfaced almost 15 days after the incident reportedly took place. A complaint in the case has been filed at the Masthi police station.

Social Welfare Department Joint Director M Srinivasan filed the complaint against the school staff. Bharathamma, Muniyappa, and warden Manjunath have also been suspended after the video surfaced.

A police officer said the video was circulated by Muniyappa and guest teacher Maresh. “The students were not provided food according to the menu chart and another guest teacher Abhishek reportedly assaulted the students. It has also been discovered that cleaning staff Kalavathi had deployed students to clean the septic tank and when Bharathamma came to know about it, she had warned her but did not initiate any action,” he added.

Festive offer

Meanwhile, Justice Sunil S Hosamani, the member secretary of the district legal services authority, visited the school and spoke to the children.

Morarji Desai Residential Schools in Karnataka are run by the minority welfare department for students from Classes 6 to 10. The aim is to bring down the school drop-out rate in rural areas, especially among those belonging to minority communities.

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