Students of Viqarunnisa Noon School and College have been protesting for the third day on Sunday (Dec 9) demanding release of Hasna Hena, the class teacher of ninth-grader Aritree Adhikari who committed suicide.
Since 8am on Sunday, students started to gather in front of the Baily road branch of the institute giving slogans and holding banners. Few guardians were also seen at the scene.
Onabi, a ninth-grader told Bangla Tribune, “We have been calling for measures against those who are responsible behind Aritree’s suicide. But, no innocent student or teacher should be harassed in the process.”
“We believe that teacher Hasna Hena is not involved in any capacity,” she added.
Another student Abanti said that they will continue their protests for their teacher’s release.
“We want people responsible behind Aritree Adhikari’s death are brought to justice. But, an innocent teacher cannot be jailed and that why we are demonstrating for her freedom,” said student Lamia Akter.
During Saturday’s (Dec 8) demonstrations, few protesters told Bangla Tribune that a probe has been opened to look into Aritree’s suicide, therefore, arresting her before the probe was completely against the law.
Students are saying that Hena was a good teacher and her arrest was nothing more than a conspiracy against her.
During a media call after the demonstration on Saturday, students Sumaiya Mahmud Mitika, Lamia Iqbal and Adiba Hassan said that they were not satisfied with the education ministry’s investigation.
The CCTV footage clearly showed that she (Hena) just escorted Aritree to the principal’s room. This does not make her guilty. We cannot condone injustice to get justice for another cause, they said.
The students added that Hena’s arrest was not part of their six-point demand and they want her unconditional release.
The body of ninth-grader Aritree Adhikari was found hanging from the ceiling fan of her room locked from inside on Monday (Dec 3).
The family of the 15-year-old girl claimed she committed suicide after the principal insulted her and the parents of because she had cheated in an exam.
The principal refuted the allegation of insulting the parents and said that they were called only to inform about that Aritree was barred from an exam on Sunday (Dec 2) after she was found to be cheating by using a cell phone.
On Wednesday (Dec 5), school authorities sacked Acting Principal Nazneen Ferdous, class teacher Hasna Hena, and morning shift in-charge Zinat Akhtar after Aritree's suicide sparked widespread protests.
Later that night, police arrested Hena from her Uttara home in the capital.