The Kendriya Vidyalaya in Muzaffarpur
Two minor Kendriya Vidyalaya students in Muzaffarpur were arrested on Monday after a case was instituted against five students for allegedly assaulting a fellow student in a classroom in August.
The arrested students, brothers, were produced before a juvenile justice board, which sent them to a state-run juvenile reforms centre in Sikandarpur area of Muzaffarpur. The two were studying in Class XI and XII, respectively.
Action against the students was taken after the assaulted boy's father lodged a fresh case against them at the Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe (SC/ST) police station on the basis of the statement of the boy's grandfather with whom he stayed at Gannipur.
The two brothers apart, three other students have been named as accused in the case. The assaulted boy's grandfather told police that five students had thrashed the boy inside a classroom on August 25 for lodging a complaint with the school authority against the two brothers.
The boy, a Class XI student, kept apologising for having complained against them, but the accused paid no heed and continued to thrash him.
Their aides even made a video of the assault and later shared it on WhatsApp to terrorise other students, the complaint said. The video went viral and soon television channels picked it up leading to outrage against the incident.
The two brothers, sons of a jailed gangster, had threatened the victim with dire consequences.
"This is why we didn't report the matter to the police earlier," his grandfather told the police. "The boy was so terrorised after the incident that he left Muzaffarpur forever."
Earlier, an FIR was lodged against the five students at the Kazimohammadpur police station on the basis of school principal Rajiv Ranjan's statement. The school is located at Gannipur in the heart of the district headquarters town, around 80km north of Patna.
The principal swung into action and reported the matter to the police on October 13 when the video showing the students brutally assaulting the boy went viral on social media.
Baban Baitha, station house officer of the SC/ST police station, said the two students had been booked under different sections of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act 1989. "Efforts are on to nab the three other accused who are absconding," he told The Telegraph over phone on Monday.
In more action against the brothers, the school authorities have rusticated the brothers, allegedly under pressure from guardians of other students who had threatened to withdraw their wards if action was not taken against the accused students.
The action was taken after a meeting with parents of the students on Sunday. K.S. Yadav, deputy commissioner of Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, Patna, confirmed the action. "The two students have been rusticated with immediate effect," Yadav told The Telegraph.
On Monday, the four-member probe team led by Sangathan assistant commissioner M.L. Mishra submitted its report to its headquarters in Delhi. The team has recommended stern action against the principal and other school staff for negligence, a source said.
Principal Rajiv Ranjan was found guilty of keeping the matter under wraps for several weeks and not informing his seniors. Ranjan, however, defended himself saying he had referred the matter to the disciplinary committee, which had suspended the two students for 10 days.
"The report has been sent to KVS, which will subsequently submit the same to the office of the human resource ministry. We are not supposed to share anything with the media." Sanghatan deputy commissioner Yadav said.
The Sangathan is an autonomous body under the Union human resource development ministry. Union minister of state for human resources Upendra Kushwaha had ordered a high-level enquiry after he came to know of the assault video that went viral.