Why did Goa school destroy sexual assault evidence?

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Violence Against Women
Panaji, Jan 17: Why did the Deepvihar High School authorities in Vasco da Gama give bath to the minor girl after she complained of sexual assault and also cleaned the toilet where the alleged incident took place four days ago?

The Goa police have been told about this action of the school which amounts to destruction of evidence and the police should crackdown on the school management. This also brings to fore the task to make teachers and other caregivers on the need to be aware of legal aspects and crime scene protocol.

The parents of the girl have alleged that the school staff tried to destroy the evidence of the crime. "School teachers washed her clothes, gave her bath and cleaned the toilet after the sexual assault," the parents have said.

"This was done before police were informed about the incident," the seven-year-old girl's father claimed, adding that he received a call from the school saying that his daughter was sick.

The father of the girl also alleged that the school management tried to hide the incident. "The gates of the school should have been sealed when the incident came to notice. But that was not done. There is clear negligence on part of the school and also an attempt to destroy evidence," the victim's father said.

The school management says that they will clarify their stand by calling a special meeting of the parents and agitated locals later today. Following the incident, there were protests for the last two days in Vasco city. Thousands of people had surrounded the school on Monday night, shouting to demand the arrest of the headmistress and the perpetrator.

Demonstrations then spread to other parts of the city on Tuesday, with shops and businesses closing in protest. Police were due to hold a press conference on the incident in the late afternoon.

Goa's Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar visited the spot to try and calm the tense gathering. "We will not spare the accused and anyone involved in this crime," he told the crowds, after which the headmistress was detained. She was later arrested for alleged negligence of duty, a police official said.

Police are yet to track the accused, suspected to be a middle-aged man. There is so much confusion that the Goa police on Wednesday released a second sketch of the person accused of raping the girl and have begun a state-wide hunt for him. They have formed a 15-member special investigation team and a reward of Rs 50,000 was announced for the person who could give information about the accused.

The attack has happened after the gangrape of a student on a bus in New Delhi last month (Dec 16) sparked nationwide protests and fuelled anger across India over the alarming incidence of sexual assault.

OneIndia News
(With agencies input)

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