Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Sep 30:
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has directed the district magistrate /superintendent of police of Keonjhar district in Odisha to pay a compensation of Rs 1, 20,000 to a class II girl student who was raped by the headmaster of the school last year and submit proof of payment to it.
The NHRC has sought a response from the district administration in the matter within six weeks and has asked to transmit a copy of the police report to the complainant for his comments.
On June 12, 2013, the commission had sought an action taken report (ATR) from the concerned authorities on a complaint filed by young lawyer and human rights activist Prabir Kumar Das.
Accordingly, the Keonjhar SP submitted a report to the NHRC on August 19, 2013 stating therein that an FIR had been registered and a case filed in the matter u/s 354/376 of IPC and Section 3(2)(xii) SC/ST (P.A.) Act and section 6 POSCO Act. The accused headmaster was liable for the said offences and a charge sheet had been submitted in the court, the report said adding the matter was sub-judice.
The commission, after carefully examining the report, recommended an award of Rs 1, 20,000 to the victim.
It may be recalled here that headmaster of government run Bhanarpur primary school under Harichandanpur block in Keonjhar district Gadadhar Mahanta had allegedly raped a Class II tribal girl student on April 5, 2013.
The accused headmaster had allegedly expelled the victim from the school and issued her a transfer certificate (TC) in a bid to cover up the incident after the victim told her mother about her ordeal.
The girl’s father lodged an FIR in the Harichandanpur police station on April 20, 2013 and the headmaster was arrested the day after.
In his petition, Das had sought the NHRC’s intervention for a fair investigation in the case, adequate compensation to the girl’s family and measures to ensure that the victim did not quit studies. He had also sought administrative action against the accused headmaster.