Receive up-to-the-minute news updates on the hottest topics with NewsHub. Install now.

Gurgaon murder: Ryan International School flouted every HC, police guideline

10 September, 2017 12:51 AM
34 0

The Ryan International tragedy in Gurugram was completely avoidable and the seven-year-old boy would still be alive had the school and the local administration followed norms and guidelines issued by the police department as well as the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

RTI documents, filed by activist Harinder Dhingra and accessed exclusively by Mail Today, show that the Gurugram Regional Transport Authority (RTA) has no record of whether buses of private schools, often owned by influential people, were inspected for their fitness to ply, or if credentials of the drivers and conductors were verified.

The Class 2 student was found with his throat slit in a school toilet on Friday after being allegedly murdered by a bus conductor who also tried to sexually assault the boy. "It is intimated that the daily school buses inspection form is to be filled by the transport in-charge of the respective schools. These forms are to be compiled in the school itself. There is no such record available with the office," the reply said in response to a query regarding the state of compliance of school buses as per 'Surakshit School Vahan Policy', which was formed based on directions from the Punjab and Haryana High Court in 2013.

The unconcern of the transport authority is further underscored by the fact that on the last hearing on July 27 of the RTI plea, which is on with the state information commission (SIC) in Chandigarh, no one from the department appeared in front of the commission and that too without notifying the body.

"The Commission has adjourned the above said case for hearing to 20.09.2017 at 11.00am as neither the respondents have put in appearance nor filed any written replies," the SIC order of July 27 said.

However, the additional deputy commissioner and regional transport officer of Gurugram, Pradeep Dahiya, refused to comment on the RTI reply and the policy's implementation, saying the district administration had held a detailed press conference over the issue and he had nothing more to add.

Apart from other provisions which make for the body of this policy, one of the conditions under the heading 'Compliance of other functions of School Authority' reads: "Ensure proper verification of Drivers and Conductors/Attendants from police department which are appointed, if it was not done earlier."

While it has been revealed that the school did not verify the accused's credentials, it also tried to cover its tracks by collecting the Aadhaar card of the conductor on Friday from his house.

A set of regulations issued by the local police department regarding safety of kids is also pertinent to the scene of the crime: the toilet which the boy decided to visit and where the accused slashed his throat with a knife. How was the conductor allowed to enter the same washroom that was also visited by schoolchildren when cops had banned such practice?

"Specifically for bus drivers and conductors, whether employed by the school of contracted out, access area must be limited to just the bus area, and specific instructions must be given to them on which areas are out of bound for them. It is therefore suggested that a toilet is provided in this area of clearly specified with visible though secluded access, to prevent need for such persons to enter the actual school premises," says regulation 2.2.4 of the 'Guidelines for Safety of Children in Schools' of the Gurugram police.

Another section of the guidelines, 2.2.3, says: "Access to areas like bus area, gym, swimming pool, sports rooms/fields, canteens, toilets should be confined to persons whose presence in the area is required, and are therefore specifically authorised access to these areas; loitering in such specific areas by unauthorised personnel should be prevented to reduce chances of problems arising (eg. Bus driver seen near children's toilets, or canteen boy seen near sports field). Accordingly, admin/security department must draw up a list of such restricted areas and names of persons permitted entry, and these must be displayed on a notice board on the premises."

Also read: Ryan school owners get anticipatory bail in Pradyuman murder case

Source: indiatoday.intoday.in

Share in social networks:

Comments - 0