Photos of girls cleaning public school toilets spark outrage, investigation ordered

An education department official on Thursday (September 22) denied media reports claiming that female students at a public school in Guna district in Madhya Pradesh (MP) had been asked to clean toilets. At the same time, Mahendra Singh Sisodia, the state’s panchayat minister, ordered an investigation into the alleged incident.

Footage purportingly showing a group of schoolgirls cleaning the toilets of a public school in the district appeared in local media on Thursday. Reports suggest that the girls were students of grades 5 and 6 at a primary and secondary school located in the village of Chakdevpur.

District education official denies media reports

Later in the evening, Sonam Jain, the District Education Officer (DEO), denied media reports claiming that female students were being forced to clean public school toilets, reported NDTV.

Jain said during an investigation; the girls said they did not clean the toilets on Tuesday (September 20) and only poured water by collecting it from a hand pump on the school premises after using the toilets as they had become dirty from heavy rain.

The DEO said it recorded statements from schoolgirls, their parents and school staff, in which all denied that the students were forced to clean the toilets.

The Minister of State has ordered an investigation

An official said photos allegedly showing a group of girls holding brooms and cleaning toilets by drawing water from a hand pump appeared in local media in the morning, following which Minister Sisodia ordered the Guna District Collector to investigate the incident.

The official said a team from the school education department also visited the public school on Thursday to conduct a separate investigation. The primary and intermediate units of the school are run from the same campus in the village.

Chandra Shekhar Sisodia, the deputy director of the education department, said, “We have taken the matter very seriously and are looking into the matter. Action will be taken against those found guilty in this case.

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