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Inquiry committee: 3 teachers instigated Aritry's suicide

  • Published at 09:03 pm December 5th, 2018
Nurul Ilsam Nahid
Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid faces wrath from the angry parents of Viqarunnisa Noon School and College’s students, on Tuesday, December 4, 2018 Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

The Education Ministry has sent a letter to RAB and police to take legal actions against the three teachers

An investigation committee of the Education Ministry has held Viqarunnisa Noon School and College’s acting principal Nazneen Ferdous, morning shift in-charge Zinnat Ara, and morning shift Class Teacher of 9th grade Hasna Hena, responsible for the suicide of Aritry Adhikary, a 9th grader at the school.

Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid instructed to take legal and departmental measures against the teachers as per recommendation from the committee on Wednesday at the Secretariat. 

Besides, the decision to cancel their Monthly Pay Order (MPO) was also implemented.

Education Ministry also sent letters to Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) and police mentioning taking legal action against the three teachers.

Nahid said: “When the parents of Aritry came to the school, the acting principal Nazneen Ferdous, shift in charge of morning shift Jinat Ara and the class teacher intimidated and misbehaved with them which triggered Aritry to commit suicide.”

“Aritry could not accept the insult of her parents, which was found during the inquiry. The shift in charge and class teacher cannot avoid the responsibility of this incident. Legal action will be taken against them on the charges of instigating the suicide” Nahid said

Regarding the decision to review the investigation report, the education minister said: "We cannot get directly involved in the recruitment and dismissal of teachers of any private educational institutions. We have given instructions to the governing body for their dismissal” 

Answering to a question, Nahid said: "The governing body is also responsible for the incident, they cannot avoid their responsibility.

The High Court also issued a directive. We have instructed the governing body to suspend the three teachers. We have the authority to dissolve the governing body, if they are found involved.”

Highlighting the various irregularities of institution, the minister said: “There is no principal at the institution for a long period of time. Despite repeated requests, they did not appoint any principal. This is also a big irregularity.

“Students were given admission overlooking the rules. We heard that student even paid Tk10 lakh to get admission, even though a lottery system was introduced to stop it.”

“We did not approve any branch of theirs either. No guardian wants to complain about these things," Nahid said.

The education minister further said: "We have heard that the court has ordered the formation of an inquiry committee to be headed by an additional secretary to investigate the suicide. We will publish an investigation report of the irregularities of Viqarunnisa within a month. We will follow this order of the court. We will form the committee today.”

"We will also send a copy of this inquiry committee’s report to the Attorney General. He will share it where he needs to,” Nahid added.

What led to the suicide of the 9th grader? 

The student hanged herself from a ceiling fan at her residence in Shantinagar, Dhaka on Monday.

She was caught with a mobile phone during a school examination, upon which she was accused of cheating, and her parents were called in by the school authorities. 

When the acting principal of the institution, Nazneen Ferdous, started misbehaving with the student's father, the student ran away from the principal's office and later, her parents found her hanging from a ceiling fan at their house.

She was admitted to a local hospital and later transferred to Dhaka Medical College and Hospital, where the on-duty doctors declared her dead.

Probe committees

Two separate probe committees were formed to investigate the suicide.

The government formed a probe committee led by Prof Mohammad Yusuf, director of Dhaka Regional Education office. It was asked to submit its report within three days.

The school authorities also formed a three-member probe committee which was asked to submit its findings within seven days.

Suspension of MPO

Meanwhile, the government on Wednesday suspended the Monthly Pay Order (MPO) benefits of three teachers of the school, including its acting principal Nazneen, over the student's suicide and subsequent protests.

“These teachers' MPO status has been cancelled,” Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid told reporters in Dhaka.

Under the MPO scheme, the government pays the basic salaries of teachers and employees of listed educational institutions following recommendations by MPs.