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Kerala Student Dies By Suicide, Allegedly Because She Couldn't Attend Online Classes

Akshita Jain
Representative image. 

On Monday, as thousands of students in Kerala began attending virtual classes, a 14-year-old girl died by suicide in Malappuram district, allegedly over not having access to these online classes.  

The girl’s father, a daily wage labourer, told NDTV that they have a television at home, but it hasn’t been working. “She told me it needed to be repaired but I couldn’t get it done,” he said. 

Her father did not have a job for over two months during the lockdown, The Hindu reported.  

A senior police official told NDTV that the family was financially strained and the girl was worried she would not be able to study further, or that her studies would be affected. The official added that initial reports suggest she was upset about not having access to the TV or online classes, the report said. 

A suicide note that said “I am leaving” was also found, according to The News Minute. 

Kerala’s education minister C. Raveendranath has sought a report from the district education officer on the incident. 

ALSO READ: Kerala Govt’s Education Plan For Students With No TV, Internet Or Smartphone

Aneesh Kumar K., the student’s eighth standard class teacher, told The News Minute that the government has instructed teachers to reach out to students who may not have TV or internet at home. He said he had spoken to the student and told her that alternative arrangements would be made. 

The school, The News Minute added, was planning to make virtual classes accessible to students using a projector. The teacher said they had collected details from all students who don’t have access to smartphones or internet and had handed over details to district level officers.

The Congress-affiliated Kerala Students Union leaders, The Hindu added, plan to launch an agitation in front of the Deputy Director of Education (DDE) office at Malappuram. Their demand will be that online classes in the state be stopped until the facility was available to all students.

DDE K.S. Kusumam said...

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