Threatening student with axe: Private school association denies involvement of school, teacher

Threatening student with axe: Private school association denies involvement of school, teacher

Says attack staged by father in attempt to discipline son

Srinagar: The Private Schools’ Association of Jammu and Kashmir (PSAJK) on Friday said that the recent viral video of a Kupwara school needs to be seen in its entire background before jumping to conclusions and using it as a tool to harass schools and teachers.
Addressing a press conference here in Srinagar, the PSAJK said the video has been shown out of context and that people need to know the entire truth before drawing conclusions.
“The reality is that there is a student who, according to his father, was getting into bad behaviour. The student was not listening to his father, he was not studying properly, was into fighting and there was danger of the student falling into a bad company/habits. Despite his many attempts, the father was unable to teach him manners. So, as a last resort, he approached a teacher to help him in this matter,” said G N Var, Chairman, PSAJK.
“In the tuition classroom, everybody was there. The person who was shown holding an axe was not even a teacher. He was a painter, who had left the school many months ago. So where the question of teacher threatening student arises?” he asked.
However he also said, “Showing of axe is undoubtedly going too far, which shouldn’t have happened.”
The PSAJK has condemned the harassment of teachers and school authorities in the name of this video.
“This is an irony. Police have arrested the Principal and the Chairman of the school, who have nothing to do with it. They were on holiday when the incident happened. And the incident happened in private tuitions and not in any working school classroom,” said Var.
“There are proper channels at different levels where such complaint has to be tackled. The school discipline committee or the Zonal Education Department was never approached,” Var added.
The Association said that with the action of the police, the career of more than 300 students is being jeopardised.
“If these arrests of people not directly connected with the video continue, the school will have to close and students will suffer; the education of the students will be the worst affected,” he said.
“We appeal to the authorities not to get swayed with the videos circulated with malicious intent, without verifying its background and talking to all stakeholders. If anybody has violated any law book, punish that particular person accordingly and do not go on hounding everybody,” members of the Association said.
The members of the PSAJK said that in this regard, a PSAJK delegation, headed by Zonal President Shahnawaz Lone, recently visited Bright Future Educational Institute, Wagat, Handwara, to ascertain the facts. The findings of the delegation are as under: 1) The video was made by the ex-teacher, Jahangeer Ahmad Rather, in the month of February 2019 during winter vacations; 2) The person having an axe in one hand (in the video) is an assistant and was working as a peon-cum-helper in the winter tuition academy. However he is a painter by profession and is no more in the school, which he had left a few months back. 3) The delegation interacted with the teachers, students and other civil society members of the village. Contrary to the hue and cry generated in the media, most of the locals termed it a harmless incident which was used to instil discipline in a student. They were happy with the school’s approach. 4) The delegation also met Deputy Chief Education Officer Handwara, the concerned ZEO and representatives of the District Legal Services Authority, the Child Welfare Committee Srinagar and police officials who also visited the school during the delegation’s presence there. Deliberations were held with all visiting officials. 5) The father of the student also gave a statement stating that he had asked the teacher to take such a step so that his son becomes disciplined.