• At homes, the child is at a severe disadvantage because generally it will be one against many. The team did not come across any case where the child has a respite from either of the parents. Both inflict beatings. In many cases, even the elder siblings will join. • In schools, teachers are hesitant to punish beyond a limit because of the perceived pressures from the parents and the communities. In extreme cases even the children could retaliate. At home, inside four walls, the parents do not face such pressures. They are the “owners” and “masters” of their wards! • The research team also found that at home it is NOT just a question of mothers beating daughters and fathers beating sons. Both parents are involved in beating all their wards, irrespective of gender.
Impact of Corporal Punishment on School Children May, 2006 57 • That Mothers beat softly, is also a myth. Children, all across, reported that mothers can also thrash and severely at that. Smaller children who generally hover around their mothers are the worst sufferers. Many children reported of getting beaten by wares used in cooking, such as iron tongs, iron rods, grippers etc. Not only these items have pronounced edges and corners, but they can leave burns as well. • Both in Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh, the favorite punishment of mothers were found to be abusing and kicking. A woman member of a parents-teachers’ association the team met in Andhra Pradesh confessed in all seriousness that she (and other women she knew) thrash children out of no particular reason. They just happened to be in her way when she is angry or frustrated or is looking to vent out her feelings. • A large number of children (above 40 %) report that they consider “WORKING” as yet another form of punishment only. They referred to working as what they are forcefully made to do – against their will - at home and outside. A children’s group when in Rajasthan, when asked to list the punishment its members receive at home, promptly listed about ten household and related chores. The list did not include a single conventional punishment such as scolding, beating, slapping etc. • The team, however, found some students-groups in Rajasthan (particularly in the villages of Dhirdaan and Kailaan) tried to play down the status of violence in homes by reporting that their parents did not beat them but their neighbors’ children are subject to severe corporal punishment! • State specific findings • In all the four states the team visited, it came across a large number of vociferous groups of children reporting some of the cruelest forms of punishment they receive at homes. These are given below. • Uttar Pradesh : Making children starve; Inflict burns on their hands • Bihar : Tying to a chair with rope followed by severe beating; Making children starve • Rajasthan : Beating followed by pouring chilly powder down the throat of the child if s/he cries • Andhra Pradesh : Tying a thick wooden rod along the child’s underarms and the back of the knee and then keep her/him suspended from the ceiling for long hours.
- Fall '19
- Corporal punishment in the home, School corporal punishment