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Rouvan case: Church of N India defends principal

Last Updated: Thursday, June 17, 2010 - 00:20

Kolkata: With the Church and alumni of
La Martinere School for Boys coming out in support of him,
principal Sunirmal Chakravarty today said he will not resign
in connection with the caning of a student, who allegedly
committed suicide later.

Chakravarty said he was not planning to resign over
the allegation that his caning prompted Rouvanjit Rawla`s

Maintaining that he had apologised to the school
governing board for the caning and was ready to face the
consequences, he said linking the suicide to his action was
"stretching it a bit too far".

Church of North India, Kolkata Diocese, which runs the
school, said "Taking into account all that has happened, we
would request the media not to link the caning of Rouvanjit
with his suicide."

Executive member of the CNI Synod and Diocese of
Kolkata, Suman Biswas, told PTI from Delhi that after
Rouvanjit was caned on February 8, he went home and even told
his vice-principal in a "laughing spirit" that he could not be
detained as the principal had already punished him for the

Rouvajit did not come to school for three days and
arrived on the fourth day with some stink bombs, Biswas said.

"If he was so much in deep anguish, pain and
humiliation after his caning, do you think he would have
played this kind of trick again in the class?"

Biswas said Rouvanjit`s post-mortem report, as quoted
in a section of the media today, did not link the suicide with
the caning.

Biswas said corporal punishment, however, would not be
practised in any of the 32 educational institutions run by the
CNI Kolkata diocese.

Meanwhile, at a press conference, former student Ranen
Roy pointed out that Chakravarty has already stated that he
was willing to face law. "If he has to resign, there must be
very good reason for his resignation."

Another former student L Amaseria, quoting media
reports of the post mortem finding an orange-coloured liquid
in Rouvanjit`s stomach, said, "It could be alcohol. If it is
proved so, it means one needs to look further than the
incident of caning."

Noting that Rouvanjit did not go to school for three
days after the caning, Roy said, "We do not know what happened
in these three days. Out of 24 hours, a student spends only
about six hours in school and the remaining hours outside. It
has to be seen whether anything happened outside the school
that prompted Rouvanjit to kill himself."

Noting that the alumni was not trying to shield the
principal, another former student I S Bhandari said, "We want
the truth to prevail. If the suicide has been caused by
caning, let the guilty be punished. If there are other
reasons, let them be uncovered."


First Published: Thursday, June 17, 2010 - 00:20
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