A teacher was reportedly forced to kneel and apologize in front of her students who were protesting the fee increase at Philobari in Assam’s Tinsukia district, which led to the district administration ordering a judicial investigation into the matter.

A video of the teacher lying on the road with her hands folded in front of the protesting students went viral on social media, leading to the condemnation of the opposition Congress.

A senior leader of the Assam Students’ Union, who was among the protesters, was expelled from the organization for allegedly inciting agitated students.

The incident occurred when students of Villobari High School protested against the alleged increase in fees. They demonstrated and closed the road to the school on 11 October. School teachers tried to calm the students and remove the siege, which led to quarrels between the two sides. It got to a point where the students allegedly forced a teacher to kneel to apologize to the students for making an insulting remark against the protest.

The Tinsukia District Judge on Thursday ordered the Dodoma Revenue Department Executive Judge to conduct an investigation into the incident and file the report within three days of receiving the order.

The order said the investigation would find details of the people involved in the accident or who instigated it. She added that the inspector of Tinsukia schools will assist in the investigation.

The university expelled the vice president of its Tinsukia district unit from the organization for his alleged involvement in inciting agitated students to force the teacher to kneel and apologise. The Congress Committee of Assam Pradesh condemned the incident and said it was even more shocking as it happened in the presence of police personnel as evidenced in the video.

Teachers are respected around the world, and forcing a teacher who has been at the school for 27 years to kneel and apologize publicly is a blatant act of utter and indefensible disrespect, Bubpita Sharma, APCC’s Chief of Communications said in a statement here on Friday.

Sharma added that the Assam government, while conducting the investigation, should charge those persons who encouraged and actively or silently participated in this appalling insult to a teacher in Assam. University representatives and students who took part in the protest later visited the teacher’s home and apologized for the incident.

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