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Corporal punishment in schools should be banned

August 3, 2007

A student severely caned by his teacher has now died from complications from internal injuries. This happened in Udaipur. But why think of just Udaipur? Just type in key words like corporal punishment india or indian schools and you will be flooded with articles on the rampant use of corporal punishment all over India. Some articles look at the problem in detail, some provide examples of horrific cases and some talk about it in a lighter vein.

There is so much to read that it would take a long time to go through it all…

I doubt whether there is anyone who has gone through the education system in India and not suffered humiliation at the hands of a teacher – pinching and slapping being some of the milder punishments. Caning is more common in boys’ schools. Other harsh punishments like standing in the hot sun the whole day is also common, yes in girls schools as well. (A comprehensive list of punishments is given here.)

Verbal abuse is routine. I had a science teacher who routinely mouthed obscenities of a nature I cannot pen down here.

Punishments are given for minor misdemeanors…like talking, not obeying an instruction quickly enough, fiddling with some object, not paying attention, wearing an uniform which is say an inch shorter that school regulations…

During our time it was not common to complain to the parents. Today’s children are bolder, but this is not always the case. This boy from Udaipur for instance did not tell his parents initially and this delayed treatment. The boy apparently comes from a middle class family – there is no doubt that corporal punishment is widespread and more severe in lesser known private schools and almost all government schools. The students are also more hesitant to complain about their teachers.

Some of my poor students from the slums have told me things that have made my hair stand on end. Beating, hitting, slapping, dragging is a regular feature they told me calmly. It happened every single day to someone or the other in their class. Narrating any such incident to parents was humiliating. The parents would blame them, not the teachers. So these kids had accepted it as a part and parcel of life…and I felt had internalised it. They justified the teachers behavior and demands. The teachers wanted them to be robots and this the students felt was desirable behavior, even though difficult. It was more difficult for boys they explained, the girls could remain still for hours…

It looks like that neither the schools nor parents are going to try to put a stop to this. At least not make any concerted effort. Its time the government stepped in and banned corporal punishment, at least in schools.

This is in keeping with world trends: Western Europe, most of Eastern Europe, Canada, New Zealand, Japan and South Africa have banned corporal punishment in schools. Australia has partially banned it. In the US, 23 states allow it. But I am sure the situation is not this bad in the US…they care about child rights.

There are countries which have gone a step ahead and banned corporal punishment at home. The countries are: Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Norway, Romania, South Africa, Sweden, the Netherlands, Ukraine and New Zealand.

Personally I don’t believe that corporal punishment either at school or at home works in changing behavior. It instills fear, not discipline…and it can do untold psychological harm and at times cause even death or permanent disability. I can’t begin to imagine the number of children who are growing up with emotional and physical scars in this country.

Update: There is news that corporal punishment will be banned in Indian schools soon. It was not just this incident in Jaipur that has made the government sit up, but also other incidents of death by caning that are surfacing. Suddenly the media is working overtime reporting severe caning incidents. In fact, now the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has expanded the definition of corporal punishment to include even small acts like name-calling. Well, thats a good start!

Related Reading: Child abuse far more rampant in India as compared to elder abuse
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Child Abuse

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49 Comments leave one →
  1. August 3, 2007 10:50 am

    As always, you hit a nerve. Yes, the situation is very bad, and I fully support such a ban. I guess the teachers are themselves venting out some sort of personal and professional frustrations.

    In fact, now it makes me wonder, why have we haven’t instituted this ban all these decades, since Independence – as we preached the Father of the Nation’s non-violence theory to the world?

    • PRABHAKAR KUMAR permalink
      September 5, 2012 9:19 pm

      As I think ,smacking a child for his faults will only stop him for doing so for a short term but will not teach the child what he should do to correct the fault.

  2. August 3, 2007 11:14 am

    When we were in school we used to imagine the sort of personal lives the abusers led. We had a geography teacher who threw dusters (she was a frustrated, awfully unhappy spinster we assumed), the science teacher who used bad language must be abusing her family we were sure…and a few years ago I heard that one of her daughters had committed suicide…
    about why we haven’t instituted this ban – I hate to think it but a certain proportion of our population is fairly uncivilized..and I feel politiicians are mostly like this.
    I have seen with my own eyes street children being thrashed until they begged for mercy on the road but the screams just got them more beatings. I have seen a man beating and kicking a woman (maharastrian btw) for more than one hour on a lawn in our colony in Delhi, an educated man who worked in an ad agency. No one intervened, not even me but I was holding a small baby. I have seen a man from my bedroom windown in Kolkata banging a woman’s head on the wall until it bled and that time I called the police. Do you know what they said? That they got regular complaints like this and they had no time…
    Well, violence is a big part and parcel of our society and those who don’t want to see it are hypocrites. Thats probably why we needed the Mahatma. But I don’t see a Mahatma in the making today…

  3. August 3, 2007 11:37 am

    Horrible! Nita: Firstly Every parent should read the story & this article.

    Mostly School Teachers try to show their heroism on kids.. or school management has got intense pressure of performance both in Academics and Extra curricular activities as well… and at Home sometimes parents are too much worried on their Kid’s career or they compared their kids with other families and finally they end up pressurising by beating them up badly…

    Corporal punishment should end everywhere.. Govt. must n should act on this fastly.

    I remember my friend who was qualified for sub-Inspector post and underwent military training and there he broke his leg & came back.. sadly It’s been 8 years he’s still suffering. He shared his experience there.. the kind of language they use & kind of unlawful punishments. I can imagine it’s effect in their rest career. After hearing his experience I would never suggest that training to anyone.

    Sadly Schools & sometimes parents too are behaving like those Military academy. It’s really sad.

  4. August 3, 2007 12:50 pm

    This is just another example of the lack of Rights for the child in India and shows again that the ciountry is badly lacking in childcare. It is clear that the illegal sale of children disguised as inter country adoptions takes place in India and the Country in my opinion needs to fully reform its child casre system in line with European countries, so that the rights of the child are respected in all instances, including the right of the child to live without fear.

  5. August 3, 2007 1:27 pm

    A very thought provoking post!

    I don’t think it’s as bad here in the States as in India, Nita, but at one time it was pretty bad here. Then, sometime during the 1960’s, medical journals began publishing articles on the long term effects of what was then called “Battered Boy Syndrome”. That woke a lot of people up to the fact that abusing children has long term consequences which can extend into adulthood. It’s my understanding the movement here to outlaw corporeal punishment began with those journal articles.

    Of course, we haven’t totally outlawed it yet, but I think that’s the trend. Even in some states where it is still permitted, a teacher must contact the kid’s parents and get permission from them before hitting the child. That probably serves to defuse spontaneous violence.

    Here in Colorado Springs, I see posters that say, “Never ever hit a child”, whenever I ride the bus. I also see other posters that encourage people to call the police if they witness family violence. So, while we are still a violent culture compared to some countries, there is an effort afoot to do something about it.

    What I would like to know is how anyone can make a peaceful society if you begin by teaching kids it’s normal and proper to beat people? Won’t many of those kids grow up to think that violence is a good way to solve problems? And I do not want to take a cheap shot at American culture, but haven’t we recently proved to the whole world by our folly in Iraq that violence is not the best solution to every problem that comes along?

  6. August 3, 2007 1:42 pm

    I agree Paul….teaching kids violence is perpetuating it.
    I think human beings themselves are basically violent (look at our history!) and it is only civilization and modernity that is teaching us to curb our violent instincts. Traditional societies generally turn a blind eye to family violence which I feel is due to two reasons:
    1) community comes first, not individuals
    2) people are afraid of going against traditional beliefs like spare the rod and spoil the child
    Maybe there are other reasons as well but overall I find that violence, whether against children or other weaker members of the society is more prevalent in traditional societies. Strangely, these societies may be very peaceful otherwise…!
    It makes me wonder if there is a connection between family violence and state sponsored violence (when you mentioned Iraq and wars it set me thinking). I wonder if anyone has ever tried to relate the two..

  7. August 3, 2007 2:27 pm

    This is an interesting topic…. And i personally have been through corporal punishment…. I was made to remove my shirt, sit beside girls, caned, made to stand in sun etc
    I would like to put this in two perspectives, one is private schools and colleges and the other is government schools and colleges….
    Basically I am from AP and would like to give an account of it.
    My education from childhood has entirely been in private schools and colleges.
    Caning was a common thing… Parents approved it, They always wanted their children to top the class, Become Doctors and Engineers, what the child was going through didnt really matter…… Here children starting from 7th class are crammed with something called as IIT or EAMCET (State entrance into medical and Engg) orientation which I dont think they have the maturity to understand….. And special people were appointed for this purpose namely coordinators or whatever…. Their speciality is to make children study and they are skilled at all forms of Punishment…. I had a few of my friends who ran away from their homes and school because of this…. Even during our Intermediate when we were about an age of 17 or 18, we were caned……And were also threatened to be dropped into the weaker sections of the class… This really created intense stress…. This does Certainly effect the children a great deal………..
    In Government schools, the policy of government is that in whichever schools the result is less, the staff are put to sanction… (Cuts in their increments)… So they are forced to make children study by force…
    Unless the result oriented nature of education changes, children will be subject to such acts…………………

  8. August 3, 2007 2:58 pm

    Anil, that was an insight into the problem. Performance – required from parents, teachers and society…and physical and verbal abuse is used as a way to enforce it.

  9. August 3, 2007 5:22 pm

    Nita –

    Thank you for writing about this very difficult topic.

    “It instills fear, not discipline…and it can do untold psychological harm and at times cause even death or permanent disability.”

    I could not agree with you more, when we humiliate or raise a hand to a child we are teaching them that when someone does something which they consider wrong, then the appropriate response is to belittle, humiliate or harm them. This is the lesson that we have, historically, taught our children. I am amazed that we are surprised by the violence in this world, we create it every time we harm a child.

  10. kellysday permalink
    August 3, 2007 8:04 pm

    You go, girl!

  11. August 3, 2007 8:24 pm

    A child dying as a consequence of being disciplined by a teacher at school is too horrific to contemplate! Obtaining “desired”results in behaviour and performance through coercion and battering establishes and perpetuates life-long attitudes toward “ends justifying the means” and institutionalizes top-down power relationships much beloved by people of conservative bent everywhere.
    Thank you for writing about this situation Nita. It is by making public such situations that people then become aware of needed change and add their voices together to promilgate the necessary means by which to force change in attitude, behaviour and social policy.

  12. August 3, 2007 9:22 pm

    aikaterine – yes you are so right when you say: “I am amazed that we are surprised by the violence in this world, we create it every time we harm a child…” The only way to end violence it is to start with the children. Teach them peace.

    Suburban, yes i feel these things should be highlighted, not hidden or denied. Luckily we are a democracy and have a free press and therefore what is wrong comes out. That is why we will heal faster than those nations which hide and deny…

  13. August 4, 2007 12:13 am

    I think it’s okay to smack children for being naughty or to punish them in other ways that are not in any way a direct threat to their health or their life. Beating up children and causing them injury is different from smacking them and letting them know that their wrongs will not be encouraged. Unsmacked children can lose out on a lot of important moral lessons and opportunities to grow than children who are disciplined in the right way.

    I absolutely agree that teachers or anyone else for that matter have no right to injure children who are entrusted to them by parents. I don’t know how far bans are effective though. Even if there is a legal ban against child abuse would the students, parents or even the teachers at schools for the economically weaker classes know about it or act upon it? How much effect does legal action even have on crime? Yes it makes crime illegal but to remove a social evil you need to change the society not just its laws.

    -AA

  14. Phantom permalink
    August 4, 2007 5:26 am

    I have never understood why it is many teachers adopt such sadistic, selfish and downright abusive practises. Many of tem of course vent their pwn personal frustrations on the innocent kids, and while I do sympathise woth those teachers who may indeed have had unfortunate personal circumstances, that is still no excuse for bullying an innocent kid. Yes, it is indeed bullying, in fact, it is chauvanistic bullying of the highest degree as it emenates from someone in an inherent position of power, it is a massive abuse of that power, that privilege lf teaching. The ancients used to worship the learned and those who chose to impart their knowledge and wisedom……I for one, don’t really respect most of my school teachers at all…yes, a few of my teachers do stand out in my memory, having left a permanent positive mark on me, but the majority were pure selfish creatures from narcissitic hell :)

    That a kid had to die on account of abusive practises by a teacher, is a severe indictment on our society’s willingness to compromise the safety, psychological welfare of a child, all in the name of academics???? Well, what use is that academics now??? Such teachers should be treated as no more than common bullies…they deserve a healthy dose of their punishments.

  15. August 4, 2007 7:27 am

    Power corrupts! In our society teachers get a lot of power over kids and principals are demi-gods (which I have written about here ) and I feel this goes a long way in giving the teachers a free hand.
    Phantom your remark
    :// I for one, don’t really respect most of my school teachers at all…yes, a few of my teachers do stand out in my memory, having left a permanent positive mark on me, but the majority were pure selfish creatures from narcissitic hell//
    rings true, at least for me.
    The problem, which our esteemed teachers do not realise that once you lack respect for a particular teacher, you tend to lose interest in the subject. At least that is what happened to me. If I chose English as my special subject, it has probably something to do with the wonderful teacher I had.

  16. santosh kulkarni permalink
    August 4, 2007 12:21 pm

    I have gone through all the articles and news of CP. I have a huge accumulations of such papers with me which I have been collecting since past 5 years. Whatever you have said in your articles are my own feelings. I too personally witnessed / heard very cruel beatings / punishments given to children by teachers and parents and have also seen its effects on the kids. I have personally affected due to this and had serious psychological problems. Really it is shameful that people only talk and no one really comes to help the kids. Govt.is only making laws but not serious on its implementation. Corporal punishment is banned only on papers but the fact is just opposite. It is very commenly used even to students in college which is very surprising. It is needed for all people who oppose the C.P. come together and launch a big nationwide campaign against beatings . Lets start it today.

  17. August 4, 2007 3:26 pm

    Nita –

    I hope that you do not consider this response an overstep, but I noticed the no one had addressed the comment A or AA left, and I wanted to.

    AA –

    Let me say that I respect you for posting a viewpoint that is so different than all of the others. I know that can sometimes feel like stepping into the center of a fire.

    “I think it’s okay to smack children for being naughty or to punish them in other ways that are not in any way a direct threat to their health or their life.”

    I understand the distinction you are making between a small ‘smack’ that does not cause physical harm and what would be considered physical abuse. But here is my problem, every time we do do anything to a child we are teaching them something. They are like little sponges. And when we raise our hand to them, whether to ‘smack’ them or to physically abuse them, we are teaching them that when someone does something that they consider to be wrong than it is o.k. to hit them. And that is never o.k.. It is not o.k. for an adult to hit another adult, not even smack them a little. I would be very offended if another adult came up to me and ‘smacked’ me (even lightly) for doing something that they considered wrong. In point of fact, that is illegal. We call it assault. So why, then, is it o.k. to do to a child? Shouldn’t we be MORE careful with the children, who are so impressionable?

    “Unsmacked children can lose out on a lot of important moral lessons and opportunities to grow than children who are disciplined in the right way.”

    I disagree. I think that smacked children, generally, end up with a distorted view about appropriate responses to disappointment (see my statement above) that need to be overcome in adulthood. Children who are disciplined in the right way, with a firm loving respect for their personhood, do not have to leap over that difficult hurdle. And personhood or humanity is not somethng that is earned. We are born perfect souls, complete in both.

  18. August 4, 2007 5:12 pm

    aikaterine, thanks for your response. You have put across the point very well and very convincingly.

  19. Phantom permalink
    August 4, 2007 9:18 pm

    Well, not that I’m in any way an advocate of smacking children, but its important to note that up until a certain age a child is incapable of having a cognitive understanding of what is right and wrong, correct and in-correct. For e,g……a 2 year old, like many of thay age, might have the habit of putting his finger into all sorts of places….say for e.g. a power point….or into ay such area that could pose physican danger. Explaining to the child about the logical consequence of such an action is probbaly redundant, as the child is not really capable of really understanding the concept of action – consequence, danger etc. In this scenario, is it better to smack the kid everytime he does something silly (liek try and put his finger down a power socket!!!!) or should we let the power of logical reasoning diciate all his actions ??????

    I had my fair share of smacking when I was a little kid….and in many situations, i doubt if I would have learnt in any better way….and I think I turned out OK :) Problem of course is if thiis smacking continues beyond a certain age and for situations beyond the absolute necessary.

  20. August 4, 2007 9:42 pm

    Hi, first let me compliment you on a fantastic blog. Quite fantastic. I am so impressed by the layout and the content. (I came over from Café Philos).

    Anyway, I was shocked to read that corporal punishment is still allowed in India but especially surprised to read of its acceptance in America. I teach in a New York City public school and there are strict guidelines in place to protect the students; not from the more obvious abuse like hitting which is obviously out of the question but it is forbidden to make a child feel embarassed or to criticize them verbally so that they feel bad. That is considered mental abuse and teachers need to be so careful about every movement or word that could be used against them, rightly or not. So it is news to me that under that climate in NY that other states do not follow suit.

  21. August 4, 2007 10:41 pm

    Gary, thanks. :)
    About America, I think the awareness that corporal punishment is wrong is there in schools in America but even I am not sure why it has not been banned altogether. It would be interesting to see in which states it is allowed…whether they are conservative states or not.

    Phantom I am afraid I disagree with you entirely on this. I have brought up two kids myself and when my kids did anything dangerous I simply rushed and picked them up from that situation. In fact the anxiety in my face was usually enough to deter them and I even worried that I had made them too anxious! I have never ever had to hit my kids to take them away from dangerous situations.
    Believe me, kids are intelligent, they understand. I can give you umpteen examples and it would fill up many pages because I had very active and healthy kids but this is not the place for it here. And by the way I never kept an ayah, I never left my kids with my mother or mother in law (they were not around anyway), and I never kept them in a cage.
    True, I did yell at my kids at times, but I am not proud of those times…
    today I am proud that of the fact that I brought up my kids entirely on my own, which many parents I knew didn’t. They have cooks (we couldn’t afford them then) and ayahs and parents and in-laws to help out.
    What I am saying is that there is no need to hit kids. No need at all.

  22. August 5, 2007 2:34 am

    Aikaterine, thanks for addressing my comment.

    I fully respect and agree with what you’re saying. If a smack or punishment of any kind is given as a reaction of anger or dissatisfaction with a child’s behaviour, it is assault, exactly the same as it would be for adults as you’ve mentioned. But when a child is smacked for discipline’s sake the way I was at school when I was younger, it can be very helpful. The teachers at my primary school kept wooden rulers on their desks and had clear rules about discipline. If students broke those rules, they would be summoned to the front and given a light tap on the hand with the ruler. The message didn’t make our hands red, it made our cheeks red. Children are impulsive and it is in the curious nature of children to experiment with everything including rules about discipline. A smack or a tap by a wooden ruler, given when the child expects to be punished and not just whenever the adult feels frustrated, are a way of making a child more aware of the physical reality of conscience. In this case, the child is aware of his or her wrong before being punished for it in a way that doesn’t cause any damage, only acts as a symbol to reinforce the rule that was broken.

    It is exactly the same as the law imprisoning us or asking us to pay a fine for breaking laws. No one has the authority to detain a person without reason, or demand money without justification; if you jump a red light you are not answerable to another citizen and your equal cannot demand you to pay a fine to them. But teachers, parents and people in positions of authority need to set methods of discipline that will be helpful to the children in their care.

    It might be useful to mention that while there is punishment for bad there should also be encouragement for good. I have been smacked with rulers when I was wrong, yes even slapped lightly on the cheek or made to wear a red paper tongue for talking too much in class. But when I did well, the class was asked to clap for me, there was a chart with every student’s name on it and gold stars were given for good behaviour.

    Children are absolutely like sponges and I agree humiliating children can teach them to behave the same with others. But there are perfectly respectable ways of smacking children or disciplining them. My main point is, smacking a child shouldn’t make a child fearful or hating of the person who smacked them, but of the thing they did to deserve the smacking. Realisation of wrong is far more important than punishment for it. And if punishment can help a child realise and accept a wrong then why not. And offensive smacking only makes children defensive.

    Nita – I’m sure your children are lovely people and I’m very glad for them that they learnt all you wanted them to know without going astray. I was not that lovely :) I wouldn’t blame that on my mother’s reluctance to smack me at all, because my elder sister is the loveliest, most disciplined child I ever knew – but all kids are different. I was a brat and sometimes I do wonder if I should have been smacked more :)

    -AA

  23. August 5, 2007 7:06 am

    I am not against punishment AA. But I believe there are many ways to punish without resorting to hitting or smacking. Things like extra homewok for example. taking away priviliges. things like that. believe me they can be very effective. at times a teenager for example could be far more devastated if he cannot attend say a football match or have his pocket money halved, than just get a smack and get it over with. every parent can find punishments like these, and ofcourse the severity of the punishment has to match the deed. ofcourse smacking is easier and quicker.
    it has also to be consistent to work. smacking in any case is never consistent, depends on the mood of the teacher or parent and it becomes difficult when the deed is very severe. what is the teacher supposed to do? Whip the student? abuse?
    one more very important point, it is more common than not to use harsher punishment than just light smacking or light taps with rulers which you mentioned.

  24. August 5, 2007 9:48 am

    AA –

    I have to agree with Nita. I just do not think that it is ever appropriate to hit. So why use it as a punishment form for children when there are other punishments out there.

  25. Phantom permalink
    August 6, 2007 7:09 am

    I do agree that smacking is a very very short term, short sighted mechanism of instillign discipline, and that is why I’m agreeable to its LIMITED and intelligent usage only up until that point when a kid is old enough to have a cognitive understandign of what’s good, bad, right and wrong. I don’t believe that a parent who lightly smacks their young kid in certain circumstances, is being a vindictive, abusive or selfish parent. I can certainly recall certain instances in my childhood when I did something really stupid, and got a bit of a smacking from dad or mum…..and it was the very fact that they, who normally never ever raised their hand at me, actually had to smack me a little…..combined with their verbal disciplining…..the combination of this made me realise the severity of what i’d done.

    Anyway, I dont believe that any sort of smacking should be allowed in schools as by the time a kid goes to school, he is efinitely old enough to understand whats being told to them, and physical punishment is rather counter-productive as it instill fear rather than genuine understandign and awareness.

  26. kds khurana permalink
    October 3, 2007 6:34 pm

    is there any supream court ruling on banning corporal punishment in the schools in india?

  27. October 3, 2007 6:40 pm

    Kds, you could get a comprehensive report here:

    http://www.endcorporalpunishment.org/pages/progress/reports/india.html

    This is a state issue and various states have already banned it. Goa is one example.
    This report is of June 07.

    Another link is here

    http://www.crin.org/resources/infoDetail.asp?ID=14409&flag=news

  28. kushal permalink
    April 13, 2009 9:25 pm

    Friends this trend of corporal punishment is taking a very serious turn and will slowly come to an end i am currently in my 10th boards (14-april-2009) and i was given this topic as the debate topic in our school(as the first ICSE assignment or project whatever you call it) . our school does not allow corporal punishments and hopefully it will stop in other schools also.

  29. October 22, 2009 11:51 am

    i feel corporal punishment is wrong method of behavior.if we teach students through violence means then how could we expect cool behavior from them.so as student of psychology i request all who read this message please try to understand the brain of student.

  30. Samrat permalink
    November 9, 2009 12:18 am

    Nita,
    A very wonderful article and equally wonderful debate specially regarding comments of A and Phantom. I was a teacher for 15 months in a govt aided school in west Bengal. My daughter is now 2 yrs old. during my role both as a teacher and a father i have learnt that children do evrything due to an urge or eagerness to know without caring or knowing about the consequences. for example a child will not knowingly put his/her finger in a socket, but he/she has this urge to discover and it is not enough to only make him/her feel that it is wrong, it is equally necessary to prevent the same in future and this is where punishments come in. Physical punishments never yeild good results on the contrary they make the child submissive and meek. the ‘making the cheeks red’ theory of A is very handy in this regard, the ‘cutting down previlages’ theory is also equally helpful. Older children commit mistakes knowingly. for example a 14 yr old knows that smoking is not good yet he cant resist the temptation,and it is the greatest irony of history that his chain-smoker teacher thrash him for smoking. i mean come on dude, set an example. discipline cannot be taught it can only be learnt from the surounding environment. we shall try to create that environment first.
    Moreover, punishments are inflicted on children mostly because they hurt their parents or teachers ego. it is less important to the parent or teacher that the child has committed a mistake, that might harm his personality in future if repeated, more important is that the child did not pay heed to their advice. this ego makes a ‘smash’ a ‘thrash’ and creates Udaipur incidents.

    • November 9, 2009 6:34 am

      Thanks for the deep insight into this issue Samrat. I am personally against physical punishment and have brought up two children without having to resort to it. There is another aspect to this issue and that is that the parent often does not spend enough time with this child. For example if a child is going towards the electrical socket, it is so easy to distract the child and engage him in something else, all the while telling him that the socket is dangerous. But this has to be said in a non-threatening manner otherwise the curiosity of the child will increase. After that one can quietly do things like block that socket with a piece of furniture and so on. I am talking of a one year child or maybe two. Most parents find it easier to terrorise the child by smacking and this gives them plenty of time to sit in front of the tv or read the paper and so on. Smacking is a lazy way of disciplining children. Small children need constant attention, and constant interaction and adults would be surprised at how reasonable they are.

  31. November 30, 2009 3:36 pm

    We at Plan fully support the thought of banning corporal Punishment in Schools. Plan runs a universal campaign against corporal punishment called LEARN WITHOT FEAR (www.learnwithoutfear.in) which focuses all its efforts to stop any kind of violence in schools and create a fear free environment for students across societies.

    Plan’s vision is of a world in which all children realize their full potential in societies, which respect people’s rights and dignity. Plan India is a child-centered development organization that aims to promote Child Rights and improve the quality of life of vulnerable children

  32. Barsha Banerjee permalink
    December 2, 2009 9:14 am

    it should be abolished and those who r in the field of abolishing corporal punishment i am always there in the support of them.

  33. March 18, 2010 11:34 am

    Sir,

    I want to know if I can be helped in taking action against the School that had made my son psychologically ill who is under treatment.

    Thanking you.

    Yours sincerly,

    C. James white

  34. Pranati Patro permalink
    April 18, 2010 2:35 pm

    Nita,Thanks for your valuable discussions and all the contributors.Really I got a new insight into the issue.Recently I have attended a workshop wher a teacher claimed to have ‘transformed’more than a hundred students after he severly thrashed them.Personally,I feel this is a problem of human consciousness.As long as we are resorting to anger,hatred and violence to control others we are sending negative vibrations to the universe.In response,we are confronting wars between countries,hostilities between religions.We have access to so much knowledge written throughout the centuries,still we resort to negative methods.Has ever hatedness solve the problems of human life.Children are like soft,delicate flowers.they should be handled with care.We should teach them to love because only love can transform the world.There is no other way.

  35. April 28, 2010 10:10 pm

    thnx a lot for writing this article….it really saved my debate on this topic.

  36. PROFESSOR AWSIMO permalink
    August 23, 2010 12:37 pm

    u are right Nita corporal punishment should be banned FOREVER

  37. Selestina permalink
    December 8, 2010 6:40 pm

    caning should never… never been imposed to students.

  38. March 8, 2011 1:05 am

    when schools give kids swats they think they make kids learn all they are doing is making them hate school and want to leave even more schools are supposed to stay and have fun learning not learing by swats!

    • March 8, 2011 1:08 am

      opps in the middle of to and stay i ment ” make students” in between

  39. March 8, 2011 1:13 am

    :}

  40. kritika permalink
    July 11, 2011 5:13 pm

    hey i want u guys to help me out
    i have to make a project on it
    i don’t know how should i do
    it should consist of interviews
    i don’t have the questions that we can ask them about it
    it has been banned bt still it has been practised in schools
    what should be the next step regarding it?

  41. aman permalink
    September 19, 2011 10:13 pm

    School corporal punishment covers official punishments of school students for misbehaviour that involve striking the student a given number of times in a generally methodical and premeditated ceremony. The punishment is usually administered either across the buttocks[1] or on the hands,[2] with an implement specially kept for the purpose such as a rattan cane, wooden paddle, slipper or leather strap. Less commonly, it could also include spanking or smacking the student in a deliberate manner on a specific part of the body with the open hand, especially at the elementary school level.

    Physical Punishments:
    1. Making the children stand as a wall chair (Goda Kurchee in Telugu),
    3. Making them stand for the whole day in the sun,
    4. Make the children kneel down and do the work and then enter the class room
    10. Making them to do sit-ups (Gunjeelu),
    11. Caning and pinching and
    12. Twisting the ears (Chevulu pindadam)

    It was not just this incident in Jaipur that has made the government sit up, but also other incidents of death by caning that are surfacing. Suddenly the media is working overtime reporting severe caning incidents. In fact, now the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has expanded the definition of corporal punishment to include even small acts like name-calling. Well, thats a good start!

    Proverbs 23:14. The authorship is traditionally attributed to King Solomon: “Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.”

  42. isha permalink
    October 12, 2011 6:01 pm

    i need some good suggestions on this topic in hindi. can anyone suggest the name of the popular hindi sites regarding this?

  43. May 6, 2012 3:55 pm

    In reality, what all this shows is how the adults are mercilessly exploiting the children (not all of them) with corporal punishment, often finishing on them the rage they have on some other matter. And discouragement from the elders also deters their imagination. It often earns them punishment instead. And for anything and everything children receive corporal punishment. And if somebody questions it, they are likely to get one of these replies 1: “It is for their own good.” or 2: “They’re our children. Why does it matter to you?” But personally I don’t feel corporal punishment does any good at all. And who gave them the right to do with their children as they please? Aren’t children humans too? Don’t they also deserve human rights? So I hope I have made my stance clear that I STRONGLY SUPPORT BANNING CORPORAL PUNISHMENT AND ADEQUATELY PUNISHING THOSE WHO FOLLOW IT………. Now who supports me?

  44. mohit kumar permalink
    August 23, 2012 9:59 am

    this is harresment for child it should be banned i fully support such type of rule.

  45. shifana thaj permalink
    November 2, 2012 8:57 pm

    me 2….agree with u aaall…

  46. dhwani mishra permalink
    July 21, 2013 8:21 pm

    ya if punishment is banned in school so children not societ some days before in delhi techer beaten a student and student is suffering from difficulties and after thy can societ

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