Controversy surrounds Kothalawala College Principal’s release as allegations of cruelty arise

Controversy surrounds Kothalawala College Principal’s release as allegations of cruelty arise

Written by Staff Writer

20 Feb, 2014 | 9:55 pm

The parents of the child who allegedly committed suicide after she was reprimanded for posting pictures on the social media website , Facebook say that their second daughter is refusing to go to school. The victim’s sister also studies in the same school as the victim.

The principal of the school was released on bail after he was produced in court on Wednesday. The younger sister of the deceased is a Grade 9 student of the John Kothalawala College in Kurunegela.

It has been fifteen days since the death of the victim, and the parents say that their youngest daughter is refusing to go to school.

The sister of deceased said: “I am afraid of going to school. I am afraid of how  the teachers and the principal will react ..”

The National Child Protection Authority arrested the principal of the school in connection to the suicide of the student and produced him in court. The principal was subsequently released on bail. This is how the released principal was welcomed by the students and the teachers at the school. (Please watch video)

Meanwhile,  Dhammika Gamarachchi , the lawyer representing the aggrieved party said: “The reasons as to why bail should be denied to the principal were not mentioned in the b report filed by the investigating officers of the NCPA.”

“There was a tense situation among  residents since morning. They did not note in their report that he could commit such an act once more while on bail. He did not state that this could interfere with their investigations. He was granted bail at 2.30. By 3.30 he went to the school in a large procession.”

“He went to school and after addressing the students they were allowed to leave. Keep in mind that these children who were off at 1.30 were kept till the principal was released. This is also an act of harassment against the children. There is something suspicious about this because the principal was aware that he was going to receive bail.”

Police Media Spokesperson, SSP Ajith Rohana also commented on this: “The NCPA Police Unit functions under her so you will have to inquire about that from her. The NCPA has recorded 15 statements according to information I have received.“

“The principal was arrested and subsequently released on charges pertaining to cruelty against children. This division function under her.”

Meanwhile,  according to the Chief Minister of the North Western Province,  a thorough investigation will be launched into this incident and the future course of action will be decided on.

Several days after the death of a student from Kurunegala,  a similar incident was reported from the Elpitiya area in Galle.

In this instance a nineteen-year-old youth hung herself in Mannagoda , Elpitiya. According to the police,  the victim had used the picture of a different girl as her profile picture on her Facebook page. A number of incident of deaths connected to social media sites were reported in the recent past.

We inquired Internet Specialist, Vicky Wickramaratne on this issue: “The easiest way to identify the fake account of a girl is through her profile picture. If the photograph is of high quality then it could be fake.”

“Boys usually misrepresent their village name or school name in their accounts. We can use such techniques to identify boys. The government or some other institution cannot control this.”

“If we are disciplined when using social media websites then this will not happen. You could complain directly to Facebook, if so such fake accounts will be blocked…”


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