The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Mother's tape sting on love-call teacher

Krishnagar, March 29: A lady physical education teacher has been accused of making sexual advances and proposing marriage to a Class VIII girl in a Nadia school.

Following a complaint from the girl's mother, the authorities of Aranghata Girls' High School at Dhantola, about 70 km from Calcutta, showcaused the teacher yesterday.

Armed with a taped telephone courting of her daughter by 25-year-old Sunita Sen (name changed), the mother alleged that she wanted to 'undergo a sex change operation' to facilitate the marriage.

Deepali Biswas also told headmistress Sikha Biswas that the teacher had flooded her daughter with letters 'full of obscenities' over the past five months and spoke to her over phone urging her to enter into an intimate relationship.

The woman, whose husband works in the merchant navy and is stationed in Mumbai, initially thought that the teacher spoke to her daughter over the phone frequently because she was fond of her.

A month ago, the girl told her mother about the teacher's advances. First flummoxed, Deepali gathered wits and apparently laid a trap. A relative, who is a BSNL employee at Chakdah, helped her record one of the teacher's telephone chats. 'I asked my daughter to prolong the talks when the teacher called and we taped the conversation,' she said.

Last week, she took the letters, the audio tape and a cassette player to the headmistress.

Sikha Biswas said: 'I was stunned and could not believe my ears. I realised it was our teacher Sunita.'

The school managing committee secretary, Manoj Chakraborty, was told about the allegations. 'The decision to serve the showcause notice followed,' said Chakraborty.

The headmistress said she has also briefed the assistant district inspector of schools in Ranaghat, Ratna Das. She asked the school to inform the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education immediately.

'The managing committee of a school has been empowered to showcause a teacher. I have asked the school authorities to report the matter to the board. I have also sought a detailed report from the headmistress,' said Das.

The headmistress said Sunita has been asked to reply to the showcause in a week. 'We will act against the teacher after getting her explanation. The allegations levelled against her are very serious and we cannot sit idle,' she added.

The girl said the teacher had been trying to 'get close' over the past few months. 'On Republic Day, I went to a training camp with her where she proposed marriage. I was stunned. Then she started writing letters to me. She even told me she was willing to be a man. I could not understand what she meant.' When the letters failed to evoke response, the girl said the teacher 'began calling me up'.

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