19 December 2018

Vasanthapiriya had slit her wrist two years ago

Vasanthapiriya had slit her wrist two years ago
PETALING JAYA - Form Two student M. Vasanthapiriya, who died after a suicide attempt over a phone theft allegation, had slit her wrist two years ago.

According to a counsellor's report, Vasanthapiriya's family was advised to seek medical help for the Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Methodist Nibong Tebal student, who died on Feb 1.

The report bore a family member's signature and two teachers as witnesses.

When asked on the matter, Deputy Education Minister Datuk P. Kamalanathan said he had been told that the student had slit her wrist in 2016, and the report had been submitted to the police for investigation.

"Yes, in 2016, she cut her wrist," he said, adding the student's family did not proceed with the counsellor's suggestion.

He also confirmed the report had been given to the police.

"On the state education department's report, we are not able to share it because of police investigations," Kamalanathan told at the 40th Southeast Asia Forensics Tournament at the International School of Kuala Lumpur, in Ampang.

"The only mistake the teacher made was sending the student from the school to a friend's house which is not her job," he said, adding that he had not seen the report himself.

When asked if the teachers involved in the case will be moved to another school as they had received threats, Kamalanathan said: "I think we'll have to go through the final police report first because their investigation will encompass a lot as it will go beyond the school.

"Our investigation is on the school, so we are also waiting for the final police report. Based on that, we'll be able to take the next course of action."

It was learnt that the teacher at the centre of the controversy had invited three fellow teachers to help her deal with the missing smartphone.

They had called the deceased into a counselling room for questioning, which allegedly lasted a few hours.

The school's parent-teacher association is helping authorities to find a solution to the situation, which has turned toxic due to the cross-accusations between various parties.

However, Vasanthapiriya's father, R. Muniandy, refuted claims that his daughter had a mental health problem, denying that she had attempted suicide previously.

"My child was a normal kid and as a parent I would have known if she was facing any mental health issues," he said.

On Feb 1, Vasanthapiriya, died after a seven-day coma following an attempt to commit suicide by hanging herself in a room in her house after being accused of stealing a teachers' handphone on Jan 24.


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