Ranchi, July 4: The state government has ordered a probe into allegations of ill treatment meted out to 120 tribal girls from Jharkhand by teachers and staff of two nursing colleges of Andhra Pradesh.
A five-member team, comprising officials from the state tribal welfare department, CID and police officers, was formed today to conduct the probe. The team will leave for Andhra Pradesh tomorrow to find out what prompted Dileep School of Nursing and Balaji School of Nursing, both located in Nellore district, to humiliate the girls, who returned on Tuesday with tales of trauma and torture, or suddenly raise the fees in the middle of the term.
The decision was taken at the behest of acting chief secretary Sajal Chakraborty, who convened a meeting with senior state officials, police officers and Jharkhand State Women Commission Mahua Maji in the conference hall of Nepal House today.
The 120 girls, hailing from poor families in remote villages of Chatra, Latehar, Lohardaga, Gumla, Ranchi, Palamau and Simdega districts, were also present.
“We have formed a five-member team, who will visit Dileep School of Nursing, Vedayapalem, and Balaji School of Nursing in Talpagiri Colony, conduct inspections and find out what’s the actual problem. They will also find out whether our girls had committed any mistake. Once the team returns, we will again convene a meeting after a week,” Chakraborty said.
Apart from Maji, principal secretary of state social welfare department Rajiv Arun Ekka, tribal welfare commissioner Praveen Toppo, ADG CID, Jharkhand, S.N. Pradhan, IG CID Sampat Meena attended the meeting.
The officiating chief secretary stepped in after Maji contacted him yesterday, saying that she was concerned about the future of the students who had to leave the one-year course in nursing midway after the colleges increased the tuition fees from the stipulated Rs 53,000 to Rs 80,000.
The girls, who met Maji soon after returning on Tuesday, also complained that they were called “Naxalites”, mentally tortured and taunted by teachers and staff of the colleges for not being able to speak in English.
However, both Dileep School of Nursing and Balaji School of Nursing denied the allegations. “We received letters from the management of both the nursing colleges, rubbishing all the charges levelled by the students,” Maji said.
She showed the letters to Chakraborty.
“I will try my best to get them enrolled in similar nursing colleges in the state so that they can complete their studies,” Chakraborty said, adding that from now on, officials would be directed to keep a tab on students leaving the state to pursue such courses.
The girls said they were eager to continue their studies in Jharkhand.
“Aaj Sir aur Ma’am itna accha se hum log ko samjhaye aur boli hum log ko chinta karne ki baat nahi hain (Today, Sir and Ma’am spoke to us so nicely and assured us that we don’t need to worry any more),” said Rekha Minz of Simdega, who was studying at Dileep School of Nursing.