In a shocking incident that is attracting widespread public outrage in Kerala, a schoolgirl was bitten by a snake that came out of a hole inside the classroom. According to the other children in the class, the girl told the teacher that she was bitten by a snake and sought medical help, only to be turned down. The child was taken to a hospital only after her father arrived and the girl died while being shifted to another hospital.

According to the news channels, Shehla Sherin was a class 5 student of the in Sulthan Bathery, Wayanad. The tearful classmates who spoke to television channels said that the girl was bitten by a snake that came out of a hole near her seat. She immediately told the teacher, who allegedly took no action other than to send word to the parents. The teacher allegedly told her that her father will take her to the hospital and continued with the lesson even though the girl began to visibly tire. The classmates charged that the teacher made no move to help her even though she was crying and begging for help. The teacher - identified as Shajil - has been suspended and will face an inquiry. The man even scolded a teacher who said that the girl should be taken to a hospital. Shehla's father stated that the child's leg was blue by the time he reached the school.

shehla

The child was taken away nearly an hour after she was bitten, and the Assumption hospital where she was taken to first, reportedly did not have antivenom. The father then rushed to the Taluk hospital in Sulthan Bathery, where the duty doctor refused to give the girl antivenom immediately. He insisted that the girl had to be in observation for 45 minutes and also took blood for tests, which would have taken longer to give results. Shehla began vomiting in the meantime and the father allegedly insisted that she be given the medicine. The doctor still refused to give her the antivenom and referred her to the medical college. In the ambulance, the father had to watch the girl die slowly, while helplessly trying to find a hospital, with even the ambulance driver calling the Taluk hospital again for the help, saying the child's condition was worsening. The doctor has also been suspended, but it is unclear as to what action he may have to face.

The student's wing of congress, KSU is observing a bandh in the State on Monday. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who strongly deplored the incident, promised action against all those who are accused of negligence. The director of education, meanwhile, has issued an order to clean the premises of all schools in Wayanad. The Zilla education officer is expected to submit a report by Friday evening and detailed instructions have been sent to all schools, including the mandate that headmasters, along with representatives of the Parents Teachers Association have to personally inspect school premises.