A 17-year-old school girl in Tamil Nadu died on Wednesday, days after she drank poison alleging abuse by her hostel warden and an attempt to convert her family to Christianity.
An unverified video has now surfaced after the girl’s death in which she suspects the abuse by her hostel warden could be due to her family’s refusal to convert their faith. NDTV could not independently verify the video.
“Two years ago they asked my parents and me to convert to Christianity. They said they will take care of my education,” the girl is heard saying in the video. On a specific question on whether she was targeted for not converting, she says ‘May be”.
The girl’s parents have also demanded an investigation into conversion allegations.
The higher secondary girl had attempted suicide on January 9 and had died on January 19th. The hostel warden has been arrested under the Juvenile Act besides invoking sections for abetting suicide based on the girl’s allegations that she forced her to clean the place besides administration and maintenance work.
Police officials say neither the girl nor her family had complained about the alleged conversion. “We had video recorded her complaint, her statement to the Judicial Magistrate, and her dying declaration. She did not say anything about conversion. Nor did her parents allege this. We are now investigating this allegation also,” Ms Ravali Priya Gandhapuneni, SP Thanjavur, told NDTV.
Authorities are also on the lookout for the person who filmed the video to verify its authenticity and the motive behind its release. “The minor girl’s identity has been revealed. This is a violation”, the officer said.
Meanwhile, state BJP President K Annamalai, who too had shared the video of the minor girl on Twitter, has called for a fair investigation and arrest of those responsible. Calling conversion a rapidly spreading poisonous plant, Mr Annamalai urged the state government to “control” it.