Girl who attempted suicide a timid student with no disciplinary issues, former teacher says

R. Muniandy giving a farewell kiss to his daughter Vasanthapiriya during the wake in their home at Kampung Tong Hai, Nibong Tebal, Penang, February 1, 2018. — Picture by KE Ooi
R. Muniandy giving a farewell kiss to his daughter Vasanthapiriya during the wake in their home at Kampung Tong Hai, Nibong Tebal, Penang, February 1, 2018. — Picture by KE Ooi

SEBERANG PERAI, Feb 1 — Vasanthapiriya Muniandy was a timid student in school and never got into any trouble, one of her former teachers has said today.

The teacher, who wished to remain anonymous, said she never had any problems or disciplinary issues in school before she was accused of stealing a teacher’s handphone.

“If they check her school records, there were no records of any disciplinary issues with her,” he said when met at Vasanthapiriya’s wake at her home in Kampung Tong Hai.

He said she was a quiet student and had belonged to a group of friends in school.

“She was just a timid girl who gets easily intimidated so perhaps what the teacher did, interrogating her in school for hours, then taking her home to talk to her parents, she must have felt humiliated,” he said.

Vasanthapiriya’s father, R. Muniandy, said when the teacher and her husband took his daughter home that day, he spoke with them and reassured them that he will find out what happened.

“I also talked to my daughter and told her not to worry, that I will settle this issue for her as she had denied taking it,” he said.

He said Vasanthapiriya seemed sad that evening after her teacher took her home but he never expected her to commit suicide.

“I’ve always treated my children like friends, everything can be discussed so I told her to wait for me, I’ll go pick up her mother from work, then we will talk about it,” he said.

By the time Muniandy came back, his eldest daughter was panicking while trying to open the door leading to Vasanthapiriya’s room but could not do so as it was blocked.

Muniandy pushed open the door to find the 13-year-old hanging from a saree behind the door.

He said she left a note telling her parents and grandmother that she loved them.

“She said she loved the teacher too and that she did not steal the handphone. She ended it by saying that this was her decision and no one else should be responsible for this,” he said.

Vasanthapiriya passed away at about 3.30am today, a week after she was found barely breathing in her room.

She was in a coma for the past week in the Seberang Jaya Hospital and did not regain consciousness before passing away.

A teacher in her school, SMK Methodist Nibong Tebal, had allegedly accused the Form Two student of stealing her handphone on January 24.

In the incident, where three other teachers were also present, the teacher also threatened to report the student to the police.

The teacher then allegedly locked the student in a room for several hours before taking her home to confront her parents.

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