In Uttar Pradesh, India, officials decided to close Neha Public School following a disturbing incident involving a teacher instructing students to physically harm their Muslim classmate. The school’s closure primarily resulted from its failure to meet educational standards established by the education department. As a result, students who attended the school are being relocated to government schools or nearby institutions.
Tripta Tyagi, the teacher involved in this distressing episode, was identified in media reports. During an interview with NDTV news channel, she defended her actions without expressing any remorse. The incident that caused outrage and went viral on social media featured Tyagi instructing her students to slap a seven-year-old Muslim boy while critiquing the force of the slaps.
The boy’s family claimed he faced physical assault due to errors in his multiplication tables. Subsequently, the victim’s father reported the incident to the police, leading to his decision to withdraw his son from the school. While no charges were filed in this case, the video depicting the incident triggered widespread outrage on social media, prompting numerous calls for action against Tripta Tyagi.
Tyagi, although not directly addressing the school’s closure, maintained her stance in media statements, arguing that her actions were necessary to maintain discipline among the students. Authorities did register a case against Tyagi, but she was not arrested as the charges against her were bailable.
Meanwhile, in Uttar Pradesh, on a Monday, Mohammad Zubair, Co-founder and Fact Checker of Alt News, faced legal consequences for revealing the identity of the minor Muslim boy who had been slapped. Zubair had shared the video of the incident on his X (formerly known as Twitter) account.
After the video gained widespread attention on social media platforms, the police finally took action, responding to the viral footage. India’s leading child rights organization, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), pleaded with the public not to disclose the boy’s identity by sharing the video.
In response to the situation, Zubair later removed the video from his online platform. Worth noting is Zubair’s previous legal troubles; he was arrested by Delhi police on charges of allegedly hurting religious sentiments and promoting enmity. His persistent efforts to debunk fake news and criticize hate speech, particularly by Hindu religious figures, made him a target for Hindutva groups.
Zubair was notably the first to bring attention to the controversial remarks made by Nupur Sharma, a leader from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), against Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). This incident escalated into a major controversy, drawing expressions of displeasure from many Muslim countries over derogatory comments.
The incident gained national attention and stirred widespread outrage, leading several opposition politicians to label it a “hate crime.” Since 2017, Uttar Pradesh has been under the governance of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). This event reignited discussions about religious tensions in India, with critics using it as an example of divisive ideologies infiltrating even educational environments.
Indian opposition Congress party MP Rahul Gandhi criticized the BJP, suggesting that the party’s actions contributed to the escalating religious tensions within the country. This incident appeared to contradict Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s earlier statements in June during his visit to the US, where he emphasized India’s commitment to fighting discrimination.