'Director Racist, Harasses Teachers': Huge Protests At Chennai School

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'Director Racist, Harasses Teachers': Huge Protests At Chennai School

The Hiranandani Upscale School management has denied all allegations made by the protesters.

Chennai:  Around two hundred parents and teachers have been protesting for four days outside Chennai's Hiranandani Upscale School demanding the resignation of its director Mark Curnane, a British national.

The protesters allege that Mr Curnane sexually harasses the female teachers, disrespects the national anthem, condemns the Indian education system and is a racist.

A protesting teacher claimed: "He (Mr Curnane) doesn't like the Indian national anthem. He wants the music teacher to cut it short to 15 seconds."

While another alleged: "He calls the women teachers names like honey and sweetie. We are not comfortable (with such names). When one member did not reciprocate, her contract was terminated."

An agitated parent said, "Does he think we are still slaves. He doesn't want to recognise Mahatma Gandhi and Abdul Kalam. He even threw out a portrait of Abdul Kalam."

The school management denies all the allegations. They blame a few teachers, who were sacked by director Curnane for incompetence, for instigating the protests.

The school has refused to probe the complaints of alleged sexual harassment against the director. The school's leadership team member Marieta Restrepo said: "No, we did not find anything in the CCTV footage. We are not conducting a probe into these allegations." 

As the protests continued for a fourth straight day on Saturday and the school remained shut, many parents are now worried that their wards' education would take a hit. 

Some students, who are preparing for public exams, even took the revision tests sitting on the floor outside the school gates. 

Chandra Praksh, a parent, said: "My son is in class XII. I'm seriously worried." Another added that "Let the kids go to school". 

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