In the video, a white student approaches the Indian American boy, who is sitting on a bench, and demands that he stand up. When he refuses to give up his seat, the American student puts him in a choke-hold and later pushes him away from the seat.
The incident took place in Coppell Middle School in Dallas, Texas.
14 y/o at Coppell Middle School North gets assaulted in the cafeteria, while students just watched.Teen in chokeh… https://t.co/9bvZSemrfW
— Malini Basu (@MaliniBasu_) 1652742642000
‘Not bullying, assault’
In a statement posted online, school superintendent Dr. Brad Hunt said that Coppell ISD was aware of the video “involving a physical altercation between two students”. He added that bullying as well as physical acts of aggression are “never acceptable and do not align with who we are at CISD“.
Many social media users pointed out that this was not bullying but rather assault. Coppell Middle School said that the matter is being investigated.
Harsher punishment for victim
The parents of the victim have alleged that their son was suspended for three days while the assailant got only a one-day suspension.
“It was horrible. I couldn’t sleep for three nights straight. It felt like I was being choked. I cried many times watching it,” the mother of the victim said, adding: “I am deeply concerned about the safety of our children and the message our school board, our police department, is sending out by not acting on this … We need fair treatment for every kid”.
An online petition in support of the Indian American boy has received 150,000 signatures.
(With inputs from agencies)