KUALA LUMPUR • A tutor at a student care centre in Malacca was detained by the police, as a man released shocking photos of his badly caned stepdaughter - who attended the centre - with dozens of welts across her arms and legs.
The eight-year-old girl's stepfather said he was shocked to find raw welts covering her limbs on April 12 after she came home from the centre.
"The teacher said my stepdaughter is slow in learning and did not complete her homework. That's why they beat her," the man, who runs a business, was quoted as saying by The Star.
"Although they had told us they were using that method to teach the children, I did not think they would beat her to that extent."
The family of the victim was not named to protect her identity.
The stepfather was speaking at a media event called by Pasir Gudang Malaysian Chinese Association Public Complaints Bureau deputy chairman Lim Thow Siang last Thursday.
The girl, whose mother works in Singapore and lives in Johor Baru with the girl's stepfather, has been in the care of her maternal grandparents since she was a baby.
Her grandfather lodged a police report the day after the alleged whipping. He claimed that this was not the first time the girl has been caned at the centre, "but usually they only beat her on the hands", The Star reported.
Chinese-language daily Kwong Wah Yit Poh reported on its website that the tutor, who is also principal of the centre, was freed on bail on Friday night.
Speaking to reporters yesterday, the stepfather said the girl is in stable condition and now goes to the after-school student care centre at her primary school.
He added that the tutor had shown no remorse when he and his wife approached her for an explanation. In spite of this, he insisted that he would not seek damages from the tutor.
"I can't rule out that this principal could be a good teacher, and I also can't rule out that emotions could get the better of anyone," Mr Lim, who travelled with the victim's stepfather to visit her at her home in Malacca yesterday, was quoted as saying by Kwong Wah Yit Poh.
"But when that happens, they should do some soul-searching."
On March 3, a 12-year-old pupil in Kedah was allegedly choked, punched and stomped on by his teacher after he came in late for school and for using a bicycle with a modified handlebar.
The boy was later given RM2 (S$0.70) by the teacher to reportedly keep mum about the attack.