The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Mystery over student death

Oct. 26: Asish Anand (18), a Plus Two student of a convent school at Bhagalpur in north Bihar, died in his classroom soon after he learnt of his school terminal examination marks.

School authorities said that Asish, the only child of advocate Ashwini Kumar Jha, apparently fainted after he received his physics answer paper from his teacher, Md Idris, who was distributing them among students.

When the students raised alarm, Idris and school principal Verges Panagatt took the boy to Bhagalpur Medical College Hospital, where he was declared brought dead.

While some local channels have hinted at corporal punishment as the reason for the death, while speaking to The Telegraph the boy’s father, denied such reports.

“I don’t believe that my son died due to corporal punishment. He was never thrashed in the past,” he said.

Interestingly, doctors who declared Ashish dead did not give any death certificate to the family. Though the family preferred to stay away from the police, the force took Ashish’s body for post-mortem late in the evening.

Some classmates blame the teacher. Some of them, on condition of anonymity, said that though Ashish was “happy” with his results, some of his classmates “accused” him of taking tuition from Idris and blamed the latter of tampering with the marks. An altercation over the matter took place and when the teacher in question learnt of the fight, he reportedly slapped Ashish. The boy apparently fainted right after that.

The boy’s father, so far, has been coming up with contradictory statements.

While talking to the media he spoke of a “major” accident that his son met with when he was five — which he said made him faint “some time ago”. However, while talking to The Telegraph he denied that his son was “inflicted with any sort of illness”.

On his part, Idris has said: “We never raised hands on any student in the school. The school has no tradition of corporal punishment. We are shocked by the incident.”

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