A teacher of a high school in China's north-western province has been suspended from his position after he allegedly demanded that his female students kiss him on the cheek in exchange for their diplomas.
According to a ShanghaiDaily report, a whistleblower had claimed that Zhang Runhua, who teaches seniors in the Tuqiao High School, would not hand out the diplomas to the girls if they did not either kiss him, or let him kiss them.
Photos of the Gansu teacher being kissed by girls in a classroom, and of him kissing a girl were also leaked online by a netizen. He was seen to be smiling in most of the photos.
These developments have subsequently led the Linxia education bureau to suspend Zhang from his duties, as well as to initiate an investigation into the allegation.
However, things took a twist after his students took to their social media profiles and stood up for him against what they perceive as 'online rumours', reported The Shanghaiist.
They also wanted the apparent rumourmongers to "make a public apology to teacher Zhang and the students or else accept legal responsibility for their actions".
An official with the Linxia school board reportedly said that if the kisses were "from the bottom of the heart", then there should be no cause for investigation or punishment for Zhang.
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