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Tutor admits assault

Calcutta, July 26: Private tutor Puja Singh today admitted before a magistrate that she had assaulted a three-year-old boy and said she had “learnt a lesson from the mistake”.

Puja, who had been caught on camera assaulting the child in his Lake Town flat, was produced in the Bidhannagar additional chief judicial magistrate’s court this morning. She was remanded in police custody till July 30.

After hearing the public prosecutor and the district legal aid services’ lawyer, who defended Puja, ACJM Apurba Kumar Ghosh asked the tutor if she had kicked the boy.

“Did you beat him?” Ghosh asked Puja. “Yes,” replied the tutor, sobbing.

“Why?” Ghosh asked.

“He was throwing toys and a mobile phone at me. He even spat on my face. I was unable to control him,” Puja said.

The ACJM asked Puja if she had any prayer before the court. Puja said she had learnt her lesson. “I give tuitions to many students and have proven myself to be a good teacher. I have made a mistake and learnt a lesson,” she said.

Puja insisted that the entire CCTV footage of her teaching the child on July 22 be examined. She denied the allegation that she had locked the room from inside. “I taught the child for 25 minutes after that part of the CCTV footage (where she is shown assaulting the boy). I marked him good in the copy and told him to go and show it to his mother. He went out and showed his mother the copy,” she said.

Puja said she had taught the boy’s elder sister too. “I had stopped going to their home because of a problem but rejoined on July 15 as I had been called. The mother was happy with my teaching and had recommended me to some students,” she said.

When the hearing started, no lawyer at the Bidhannagar ACJM’s court agreed to appear for Puja. The tutor’s family had hired a lawyer from Alipore court to defend her but he told the ACJM’s court that lawyers at the Bidhannagar court had requested him not to defend Puja.

ACJM Ghosh then directed a lawyer attached to the district legal aid services, Abhinava Majumdar, to defend Puja.