WOMAN GETS 6 MONTHS’ JAIL FOR SLAPPING SON’S TEACHER
Victim glad two-year legal battle finally over
“JUSTICE is served... the truth has finally prevailed.”
So said 38-yearold L. Vanitha, who was slapped by a pupil’s mother two years ago after the 10-year-old boy complained that the primary school teacher had allegedly pinched him for being slow in class. Vanitha taught the boy Bahasa Malaysia then.
Yesterday, magistrate Shamshol Azwa Martadza sentenced the boy’s mother, Tan Seow Yen, 35, to six months’ jail and fined her RM2,000 for causing hurt to Vanitha at the nationaltype Chinese school in Sungai Bakap at 5.15pm on Feb 2, 2015.
Shamshol, in his judgment, ruled that the defence had failed to raise reasonable doubt in their case.
Vanitha was present in court with her father, V. Loganathan, 83, and mother S. Mageswari, 66.
A red-haired Tan, who came alone, was expressionless when the verdict was read out to her. She was led out in handcuffs.
Her appearance in court yesterday was an about-turn from her appearance last week when she had threatened photographers for taking pictures of her. Speaking to the New Straits
Times later, Vanitha said she was glad that the two-year legal battle was finally over.
“I am extremely grateful. I can finally move on,” she said.
Vanitha said she had been traumatised after the slapping incident, which was witnessed by the boy, Tan’s younger sister and a male friend.
“I could not concentrate after that, as a lot of things ran through my mind. I was also crying in class at times.
“To compound matters, I still taught the boy after that and saw Tan in school every day.
“The district Education Office finally transferred me to another school nearby, without my asking, promising a better environment. I appealed against the decision but was unsuccessful,” she said, adding that many mistakenly believed that she had personally requested for the transfer.
“I did not. I had done nothing and there was no reason for me to ask for the transfer,” she said.
Vanitha said she had spoken to Datuk Naran Singh, who was holding a watching brief for her, and he had agreed to help her to file for a revision of the decision at the High Court.
“Six months’ jail seemed too lenient after what she did and the scar she left behind,” she said.
During yesterday’s proceedings, deputy public prosecutor Afiq Nazrin Zaharinan said the court should impose the stiffest penalty possible as Tan’s action was immoral.
“The court should punish Tan so that people will be aware that it is wrong to slap anyone,” Afiq said.
Tan’s counsel, Mohd Ismail Mohamed, said Tan’s motherly instinct had caused her to react in such a way towards the teacher.
He also appealed to the court to impose only a fine on Tan as she had to fend for her three children, aged 8 to 14, as a stay-athome mum. He said he would appeal the decision.
Tan Seow Yen being escorted out of the magistrate’s court in Nibong Tebal, Penang, yesterday.