Pay Rs 3 lakh to family for girl's death: NHRC to Odisha govt

The National Human Rights Commission on Thursday asked the Odisha government to pay Rs three lakh as compensation to the next of kin of a seven-year-old girl who was killed after an almirah fell on her at a government school.

New Delhi: The National Human Rights Commission on Thursday asked the Odisha government to pay Rs three lakh as compensation to the next of kin of a seven-year-old girl who was killed after an almirah fell on her at a government school.

The Commission also directed the Chief Secretary of the State to submit a compliance report along with the proof of payment within six weeks.

According to an official statement released today, the Commission has recommended that the Government of Odisha pay Rs three lakh in a case of death of Soni Pradhan, a student of class II in Uttarhana, UGME School of Puri district, when a almirah fell on her in the class room on July 29 last year.

During the course of enquiry, it was revealed that at the time of incident, the recess was on and children were playing behind the almirah. The class teacher was engaged in distribution of mid-day meal when suddenly it fell on Soni.

Parents of the girl took her for treatment at the local hospital from where she was referred to SCB Medical College, Cuttack where she succumbed to her injuries on the August 2.

In response to its notices, the Commission also found that the state authorities had accepted it to be an accident and said that all possible steps for providing medical treatment to the victim were taken and even the headmaster, SMC members and the teachers had spent Rs eight thousand on her treatment.

The District Education Officer, Puri, was asked to enquire into the matter and fix the responsibility in the case of negligence. It was found that the Headmaster had been shifted out from the school.

The Commission observed that the girl had suffered injuries in the classroom while she was under the care and custody of the government school. The death of the girl had caused irreparable loss to her family for which the state must bear the liability.

Therefore, it recommended Rs three lakh as monetary relief to be paid to the next of kin of the deceased, the statement said. 

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