NEW DELHI: A seven-year-old girl starved for over 10 hours after she was locked in her classroom even as her classmates were enjoying a picnic. While her mother frantically searched for her, the Class II student of a public school in northeast Delhi's Gokulpuri stayed there alone, weeping and waiting for someone to get her out as it turned dark.
The girl had thought that students were supposed to assemble in the classroom before they left for the picnic, but she was mistaken. She didn't even get to know when someone came and locked the classroom. "I fell asleep in between. When I woke up I was still sitting there all alone," the girl told her mother. Her mother told TOI that all parents of students from Classes I-V were asked to drop their children at school by 8am and leave the premises by 8.45am. "I told the teacher that she was going out without me for the first time and they should keep a check on her, but she shouted at me saying that my daughter was not the only one who needed taken care of," the mother claimed. "When I saw the other children returning home, I rushed to the school to get my daughter. However, she was nowhere to be seen," the mother added.
When she approached the staff member responsible for getting the children off the bus, she was told that her daughter didn't come for the picnic. "I was left flummoxed at the reply and started searching for her thinking she may have returned home on her own," the mother said.
Failing to locate her, the mother returned to the school and a search operation was started along with the teachers. After over an hour, the girl was found unconscious in her classroom on the second floor.
"Not knowing where your child is the worst feeling in the world. My daughter is still traumatised and there is not much I can do other than console her. She says that she doesn't want to go back to school," said the mother.
DCP (northeast) Ajit Singla said that a case under IPC Section 336 (act endangering life or personal safety) and JJ Act has been lodged.