A student and a teacher were allegedly beaten up following a dispute over chanting “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” at a school in Madhya Pradesh’s Agar Malwa district, police said on Wednesday.
After the incident, which took place on Tuesday in Barod town, located about 175 km from the state capital Bhopal, a case was registered against around 20 people, they said.
Students from various communities, including Hindu and Muslim, study in the private school, Agar Malwa’s Superintendent of Police Rakesh Sagar told PTI over phone on Wednesday.
There was some dispute among students over raising the slogan (Bharat Mata Ki Jai) in the school, but the matter subsided. Later, some students allegedly beat up boys of the other side outside the school, he said.
According to another police official, after the prayer at the school, students sing the national anthem and chant “Bharat Mata Ki Jai”.
Some Muslim children were not chanting “Bharat Mata Ki Jai”, and Class 12 student Bharat Singh Rajput (19) objected to it, resulting in a dispute, he said.
Rajput later complained to police that when he and others were returning home after school on Tuesday, he and a teacher were intercepted and allegedly beaten up, the official said.
According to the FIR, Rajput claimed that some Muslim boys and their friends intercepted him, other boys and a school teacher, belonging to the Scheduled Caste, in Barod’s Kasai Mohalla area.
The complainant stated that the accused abused him and others, saying who were they to make them raise the slogan and beaten them up with sticks.
When the teacher started shooting a video of the incident on his mobile phone, the accused hit him also with sticks and broke his phone, the complainant alleged.
However, SP Rakesh Sagar said, “It is more an issue of proper counselling and guidance than a legal offence as all those involved are students. The school teachers and principal should impart moral lessons to students.”
“A case under Indian Penal Code sections for assault and rioting, and provisions of the SC-ST Act has been registered following a complaint over the dispute,” the SP said.
Following Rajput’s complaint, the case was registered against nine named people and 8-10 other unidentified persons, another official said.