New Delhi, India (AFP) — Indian police on Thursday arrested a school principal accused of causing the death of an 11-year-old boy beaten over a stolen pencil.
Police superintendent Abdul Hameed said the teacher had confessed to beating the pupil at his school in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh after finding him with a pencil that another child had lost.
The child later began vomiting blood and died on the way to hospital, the Times of India daily said.
The school principal was arrested for “culpable homicide not amounting to murder”, a charge that carries a maximum 10-year jail sentence, said Hameed.
“In our initial questioning the principal confessed that he slapped and punched the young boy after the missing pencil was found on him,” he said.
A detailed medical report into the child’s injuries is being prepared as part of the investigation into his death.
Media reports said the school in the small town of Barabanki was a private establishment for underprivileged children.
Corporal punishment is banned in Indian schools, but there have been many reports of abuse.
Last November, a 16-year-old student killed himself after his teacher allegedly beat and mocked him for failing to keep up with class assignments. He left a suicide note blaming his teacher.