A 17-year-old girl by the name of Ain Husniza has been facing harassment online and from the school administration after she took to social media last month to expose how a teacher made a rape joke in the classroom. The incident took place at the SMK Puncak Alam school in Selangor in Malaysia.
“So, I just came back from school. We were talking about how there were a lot of laws protecting minors from sexual abuse and sexual harassment. And then he (the teacher) said – So if you want to rape anyone, then, rape someone above 18. All the girls were quiet but the boys were laughing like it was so funny to rape someone,” the girl recounted in a viral TikTok video.
When a traumatised Ain Husniza raised the issue with another teacher, he chose to trivialise the issue. “Oh, you are a girl. You are emotional and sensitive,” she was told. Ain Husniza responded, “This thing is sensitive because it’s a rape joke. (This is) somebody’s trauma. How can I not be sensitive over it?” Her story went viral on social media and she received support from various quarters.
Malaysian student Ain called out her teacher on social media for making a rape joke in class, but the move has sparked backlash against her for speaking outhttps://t.co/5wy7d9t5Rz pic.twitter.com/R5gUcyrcZk— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) May 17, 2021
Inspired by Ain, others came forward to narrate their stories of harassment and inappropriate behaviour in schools. “My warden twisted my nipples,” wrote one. Another student wrote, “Few students had their penis pinched.” However, soon Ain became the epicentre of harassment. While some chose to trivialise the gravity of the incident, others suggested she ‘cover up her body.’
Schoolmate gives rape threats to Ain Husniza
The 17-year-old girl was shocked when she received a rape threat from one of her male schoolmates. The incident, which broke her down into tears, took place after she had narrated the ‘rape joke’ made by a teacher in class. While taking to Twitter, Ain Husniza wrote, “Boys like him are exactly the reason I continue my fight, teachers that continuously “infect” those kind of mindset into boys need to be purged from our education system.”
but nevertheless. boys like him are exactly the reason i continue my fight, teachers that continuously “infect” those kind of mindset into boys need to be purged from our education system. pic.twitter.com/NnlDFoXeKq— ain #MakeSchoolASaferPlace (@ant33ater) April 25, 2021
In an audio clip shared by the young girl, the accused schoolmate could be heard giving rape threats to her in Malay. “You imagine tirelessly spreading awareness for better education system and this is what you read in the morning. It broke my heart. I suggest if youre sensitive, do not listen. It is very scary,” she wrote.
fyi. the voice has been changed very drastically to protect the identity of the boy. i share this simply to spread awareness of the kind of hatred i have to face in order to fight for our cause.— ain #MakeSchoolASaferPlace (@ant33ater) April 25, 2021
When Ain and her father reported the incident to the police, the Deputy IGP defended the accused and claimed that the rape threat might be a ‘joke.’ After the matter became public, the accused and his family tendered an apology to her.
School principal calls her the ‘child of Devil’
The harassment meted out to Ain Husniza reached its peak when the principal of her school made disparaging comments on her father’s profile. She wrote, “Hypocrite… Satan’s child wearing a headscarf.” The comment was followed by another remark which went as, “teach your rude daughter.” The woman, identified as one Aimanaizad Sarimah Mohammednor, is the Principal of Ain’s school. Later, the woman denied posting the comment and claimed that her account was hacked.
While speaking about her ordeal to BBC, the schoolgirl said, “I am being let down by all these adults, all these educators that obviously should know better than me. They should obviously know better than us, 17-year-olds.” She hasn’t returned to school, saying that she did not feel safe there.
Meanwhile, the Education Ministry of Malaysia has informed that the accused teacher, who made the rape joke, has been transferred until the probe into the matter is completed. Ain Husniza had received 6 warning letters between April 16 and April 30, besides threats of explusion for being absent from school.