One of the Patha Bhavan hostels, not the one where the suspended girls stay
Santiniketan, Sept. 4: Two Class XI students of Patha Bhavan have been suspended for allegedly forging their mothers’ signatures on leave applications and leaving the hostel.
Visva-Bharati sources said the vice-chancellor’s office had sought a report from the Patha Bhavan principal as the decision to suspend the students was taken without informing varsity authorities initially.
“The varsity authorities were informed about five days ago while the girls were suspended 12 days ago. The authorities have raised questions about the security of students in girls’ hostels and the lack of sense of duty of the hostel staff,” a Visva-Bharati source said.
On Sunday, a meeting was held, where Patha Bhavan principal Bodhirupa Sinha, dean of students’ welfare Siddhartha Dev Mukherjee and proctor Samit Roy were present. The Patha Bhavan authorities have been asked to keep the registrar, proctor and dean of students’ welfare posted on developments at the girls’ hostels.
“The two girls were suspended because they had forged their mothers’ signatures on leave applications and left the hostel unescorted. The Patha Bhavan hostel management has shown callousness, especially in the backdrop of the incident involving a Class V girl,” a senior varsity official said.
The Class V girl was allegedly forced to lick her own urine by the hostel warden as a “remedy” for bed-wetting.
Patha Bhavan principal Sinha said: “Suspending a student is the school’s internal matter. These things are not for you to know,” she told this correspondent.
Patha Bhavan sources said the two suspended students were residents of Kamarpukur in Hooghly and Calcutta. They had written separate leave applications forging their mothers’ signatures and had given it to the matron’s assistant. The warden of Bithika hostel, where the students stayed, was not present when they left.
“The mother of one of the girls called up the hostel to speak to her daughter. She was told that the girl had left the hostel with her mother. When the mother told the authorities that she was unaware of her daughter leaving for home, the authorities contacted the other student’s mother. This is how the matter came to light,” a Patha Bhavan source said.
The girls had gone home.
Varsity officials said that after the urine-licking incident and the subsequent controversy, Visva-Bharati had planned to outsource personnel to look after the boarders of Patha Bhavan hostels.
“A committee has been formed to train the staff in hostel management. The incident at Bithika hostel indicates that the hostel managers should play a more proactive role,” a varsity official said.