The controversial case of Thanjavur student, Lavanya, who died by suicide, has created a stir in Tamil Nadu and across the nation. The new developments have changed the course of the story. So far, the minor's death was linked to the school authorities' forced religious conversion, but new videos have emerged, where Lavanya has not mentioned any forceful conversion point.
It has been unearthed that the video widely circulated on social media was a small clip of the other three videos that were recorded. The man who recorded the videos has been identified as Muthuvel, a Vishwa Hindu Parishad's Ariyalur District Secretary.
The video has sparked outrage, and netizens are demanding BJP state president K. Annamalai's arrest for allegedly spreading false information and trying to create the religious conversion angle and for criminal conspiracy.
Lavanya narrated the torture and harassment she was subjected to by the hostel warden. The minor first mentioned her name and her parents and then recounted the series of events. She said she took a drastic step of consuming poison after the harassment by the warden reached her saturation point.
Unheard By Boarding Sister
The minor had scored distinction in her class, but this year, she couldn't visit the school often due to a family situation. She had informed the authorities but received no help. The Sister at the boarding would ask her to do mathematics, despite knowing that she missed multiple classes.
Lavanya tried to explain that she was unaware of the concepts and assured her of completing the questions later. The Sister would nod her head but make the minor write something or the other. The minor would diligently submit the work, but the Sister marked them incorrect and made her sit for hours to solve the maths problems.
"I was not able to concentrate at all. Due to this reason, I was securing lesser grades. As this continued, I thought that I wouldn't be able to study, and therefore I consumed poison," The Commune quoted the girl as saying.
Made To Do All Chores
Lavanya resided in a boarding house, Sacred Hearts Higher Secondary School in Michaelpatti, in Thanjavur.
The Sister at the boarding made her do all the chores and maintain hostel books, which affected her studies. She was asked to lock the gate, open the gate before everybody wakes up in the morning, turn on the motor, check water availability after everyone finished eating, do all the hostel chores, and maintain hostel records.
The minor had already missed out on studies, and doing all the chores made things worse.
The warden would make her do the accounts. "Even if I told her, 'no sister, I came late, I don't understand anything, I'll do it later, she wouldn't listen. She would say, 'it's okay, you first do the accounts and give, then do your work'. She will keep making me do the accounts. Even if I write it correctly, she'll keep saying it's wrong and make me sit on it for at least an hour. I wasn't able to concentrate on my studies properly at all. I kept getting low marks. I thought if this keeps going on, I won't be able to study," The News Minute quoted Lavanya.
Muthuvel then asked her if she had visited home, to which the minor said the authorities told her that she needed to study and stay there in the school itself. "They sent me home for Pongal because I was feeling unwell," she added. Lavanya said she had not disclosed to anyone about consuming poison.
The man questioned if the school authorities had ever asked her to remove the 'Sindoor' she put on her forehead, to which Lavanya confirmed that no such demands were made.
No Mention Of Religious Conversion
In the three videos, she narrates the torture by the warden but does not mention any issue of forceful conversion into Christianity. However, in the first video, the girl had said that a sister had approached her parents.
The girl had informed that the authorities had tried to persuade her parents two years ago, to convert her Hindu religion into Christianity, on the pretext of taking care of her education and living expenses.
The girl said she had noticed a certain change in the behaviour of the hostel authorities since then but was not definite if her refusal to convert was the reason for the difference in their attitude towards her.
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