Malaysian cops identify those who made pupils swim with snake

A video clip showing primary schoolgirls being forced to cross a muddy pit with a snake swimming in it as part of a team-building programme went viral on social media and sparked outrage.
A video clip showing primary schoolgirls being forced to cross a muddy pit with a snake swimming in it as part of a team-building programme went viral on social media and sparked outrage.PHOTO: STAR ONLINE

IPOH • Malaysian police have said they have identified all those involved in the shocking video on social media that showed primary schoolgirls in a boot camp being forced to cross a muddy pit with a snake swimming in it.

Acting Perak police chief Hasnan Hassan said those involved, including the person who had uploaded the incident, would have their statements taken soon, The Star reported.

The matter would be investigated under the Child Act and the Communications and Multimedia Act, he said in a statement on Friday.

Social media were horrified last week when the viral video clip showed the pupils knee-deep in a muddy pit screaming after a trainer threw a snake into the murky water as part of their team-building programme.

Those who tried to climb out of the pit were sprayed with water and told to "get in and dive" by male instructors, who were not seen onscreen.

The motivational camp held at the Perak Civil Defence Force headquarters in Kuala Kangsar last Sunday was jointly organised by the force and the school. Several trainers were suspended and the programme was halted following the furore.

Deputy Commissioner Hasnan said a special task force, comprising police officers from the Perak police contingent and Kuala Kangsar district police, was set up one day after the incident to investigate the case.

He added that the results of the investigations would be submitted to the deputy public prosecutor's office for the next course of action.

Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar said in a televised press conference that "there are elements of abuse in this case" and "you can't give these primary school children the same training as police commandos".

Several parents interviewed by The Star later said their children were emotionally affected by the incident and given counselling.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on October 23, 2016, with the headline 'Malaysian cops identify those who made pupils swim with snake'. Print Edition | Subscribe