As Ryan International School Reopens, Students Avoid Toilet Where Pradyuman Was Killed

Pradyuman Thakur was found outside the toilet of Gurgaon's Ryan International School, his throat slit, moments after his father had dropped him off

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As Ryan International School Reopens, Students Avoid Toilet Where Pradyuman Was Killed

Ryan International School in Gurgaon had been closed since Pradyuman Thakur was killed 10 days ago.

New Delhi:  Attendance was wafer thin at Gurgaon's Ryan International School, which reopened after 10 days today after seven-year-old Pradyuman Thakur was found murdered on the premises. Around one-fifth of the school's 1,200 students attended classes. Only four of Pradyuman's classmates came - two of them to quit the school.

The parents told NDTV that the children had refused to attend classes and they have no option but to get them admitted elsewhere.

The washroom, where Pradyuman had been murdered on the morning of September 8, remained empty. "We didn't use the washroom today...  I couldn't get myself to use the washroom," a senior student told NDTV.

Pradyuman had been found outside the toilet, his throat slit, moments after his father had dropped him off to school. A CCTV camera had captured the Class 2 student crawling out of the toilet and collapsing in a pool of blood.

A bus conductor of the school, Ashok Kumar, was arrested for the murder. The same CCTV footage showed he had been inside at the time. The police say the man has confessed to killing Pradyuman after attempting to sexually assault him. The Central Bureau of Investigation is now in charge of the case.

The Haryana government has taken over the administration of the school, but visiting parents said there was no arrangement for extra security. Most were angry and disappointed. "Security and facilities at Ryan today were no different from the dreadful September 8, nothing has changed since," said another parent.

After Pradyuman's murder, a three-member Special Investigation Team indicted the school for shocking lapses in security. Not only did bus drivers and conductors share toilet facilities with students, the boundary wall of the school was also broken, which meant outsiders could enter the premises at will, their report said.

The final call on whether the school will function before all the security lapses are fixed will be taken by the Deputy Commissioner by tonight.

Today, Union minister Maneka Gandhi said the government was chalking out a security protocol for schools. "Six ministries will cooperate on this and the secretaries will meet soon to discuss how the schools will implement these guidelines," the minister said.

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