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Kerala: Former school teacher & CPI(M) councillor Sasi Kumar arrested under POCSO for molesting students for 30 years

KV Sasi Kumar, a former teacher and CPI(M) councillor, was arrested on charges of sexually abusing a large number of students during his more than a three-decade-long stint as a teacher at St. Gemma’s Girls Higher Secondary School in Malappuram.

A former teacher and CPI(M) councillor named KV Sasi Kumar was arrested on charges of sexually abusing a large number of students during his more than a three-decade-long stint as a teacher at St. Gemma’s Girls Higher Secondary School in Malappuram. A police team picked him up from a homestay in Wayanad and brought him to Malappuram on Friday 13th May 2022.

In a shocking incident that took place in Kerala, it was revealed that a former school teacher and CPI(M) councilor of Malappuram named KV Sasi Kumar was involved in molesting his girl students for more than 30 years of his service. The truth surfaced as the teacher shared a post on his Facebook account on the occasion of his retirement and alumni of the school started sharing their bad experiences with him in their Facebook posts.

On the complaint of one of the victim alumni, KV Sasi Kumar was booked under the POSCO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) act. The police have succeeded in arresting the accused who was absconding for the last few days.

According to a report by The News Minute, KV Sasi Kumar on March 31, the day of his retirement as a teacher, shared a Facebook post reminiscing his 38-year-old career at the Government-aided Girls High School in Malappuram. An alumnus of the school shared a post hinting at alleged abuse by Sasi Kumar.

As the posts went viral, more students came up with similar allegations and started sharing them on social media. The alumni association of the school then informed about the allegations to the police and a complaint was filed on 7th May 2022 against the former teacher who is a three-time councillor of the Malappuram municipality on a CPI(M) ticket.

The teacher went absconding shortly after a case was registered against him, prompting police officials to launch a manhunt for the accused. Meanwhile, on Wednesday, 11th May 2022, Beena Pillai and Mini Sakeer, two former students of the school, held a press conference, wherein they enumerated myriad instances of abuse, including sexual assault, by Sasi Kumar. They also alleged that two students were on the verge of committing suicide after having endured sexual abuse at the hands of the teacher.

The students further added that the teachers to whom some of the students disclosed the alleged abuse were insensitive, and the school management took no action despite a complaint filed with its Ethics Committee in 2019. Beena Pillai also said that the complaints registered by the students clearly mentioned sexual abuse but still, the school teachers did not take it seriously.

She said, “The students had even complained to the teachers. The teachers, however, were not sensitive enough to understand the nature of the complaint. Instead, they told the students who were only 9 to 12 years old to not be coquettish to him. It is high time to educate teachers against victim-blaming. Children don’t get protection despite laws like POCSO Act being in place. There is a counselor at the school who is a nun, who is not approachable. I am not aware of the students filing a complaint with Childline.”

She added, “Two girls were on the verge of suicide. One girl had to be hospitalized for treatment because she was assaulted brutally. We have information on this from the doctor who treated the girl. A complaint was also filed at the Ethics Committee. Students realized that they had been sexually abused when they reached the tenth standard. If the normal course of action was followed, if such instances were reported at a school, the teachers would be fired with a show-cause notice. But Sasi Kumar was probably only suspended or sent on leave once. There was an attempt to file a police complaint, but that was compromised.”

According to reports, there are at least 25 alumni who have shared on social media how the teacher misbehaved and sexually abused them. But only one case is registered so far in this regard. District Police Chief Sujit Das S. said, “We will register any number of cases if complainants come forward and file their charges.”

It is notable to mention that outrage broke out in Malapurram after allegations of sexual misconduct were levelled against the teacher. A raft of protesters had hit the streets demanding action against the teacher, prompting police to use baton-charge to bring the situation under control.

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