I shared my thoughts with all of you a few days back regarding the laws related to safeguarding the children from corporal punishment given to them by the parents. Interestingly as usually happens in this country not much of discussion took place on this. One Hindi newspaper did express its opinion strongly against the provision of imprisonment to the parents. The newspaper very rightly raised issues related to culture and values. This country has innumerable examples which prove that the relationship between the parents and the children has been so pious and they both have been complementary to each other for ages. This may be the example of Lord Ram and His brother’s, Shravan Kumar taking his blind parents to pilgrimage on his shoulders, Mahatma Gandhi following advice of his parents, Bhagat Singh having a lot of respect for his parents and the family and list is never ending. These are some prominent names, but there are crores of people who would have sacrificed their life for their parents or the children. Very rightly mentioned in the newspaper that it may be one out of a million cases in which a parent would have punished the child for no reason and out of anger or frustration. Otherwise no parent would like the child to be punished by them or somebody else. When this law to ban corporal punishment in schools came into force, there were questions raised that time also. Some of them were unfounded but the misuse of the law has also been seen almost on daily basis in many schools where the children do take advantage of the basic fact that they cannot be punished in the school for anything done by them. Unfortunately, in our country most of us are driven by emotions and decide things and form opinions at the spur of a moment based on recent happenings. This ban has saved the life of a few children but this also has given way to many children going out of track. They know it very well that the teachers and the schools cannot do anything to them so they are free to disobey them, as and when they feel like. I never advocate for the physical punishment to be given to the children especially in the schools but there should be some way of improving them. They should have some fear for the acts of indiscipline. These steps to be taken by the schools and the teachers should be specified in our education policy because no education policy will succeed in preparing worthy citizens of the nation if there is no discipline in life. I suggest that when a law is enacted, at the same time, the safeguard of the other party should also be taken care of. If by chance tomorrow a child does something very nasty to a teacher, then will the government enact a law against the children?
I was quite impressed by the statement that the parents and the children in this country enjoy such a worthy and wonderful relationship that they would not so easily think about harming each other, but such laws if are put in black and white will surely spoil and mar the sanctity of this beautiful relationship. This is also true those countries that have different family fabric and setup and we are trying to follow them indiscriminately. There, the children become independent at a very early age and the parents are free from all the responsibilities but in our country the situation is entirely different. The parent care and do everything possible till they settle in their life and in many a cases even after the children start earning, the parent have the tendency and desire to help them. The same is true for many teachers even in today's time when it is difficult to find good teachers because of many reasons, the parents do not want their children to become teachers. I have shared it many times before also that the acts and laws should be balanced in nature and we should always remember our ethics and values, be it a teacher, parent or the child. This is the responsibility of all of us to save not only our culture but also consolidate it further for the benefit of the society and the nation. Why should we follow the trends in place in other countries whose culture is entirely different from ours? We must learn to value and respect our own people before we do the same to the others. I know a number of cases where the parents lived in so called developed country and earned a lot of wealth but came back to India when their children were in the impressionable age because they wanted their kids to imbibe Indian values. By enumerating this, I do not mean any disrespect towards the culture of the other countries but where the child has a separate bed and a room almost right from the day of birth, how can there be an inseparable bond? In our country the touch of the mother and the father is considered to be absolutely necessary for the perfect emotional and physical development of the child. The relationship between the children and the parents should be nurtured further than ruining it by creating a wall of disbelief and suspect for each other. The children should be taught of the innumerable sacrifices made by their parent for their well-being. The government which talks a lot of the Indianism should pay serious attention towards this issue and revive the family culture of the past. We should work to create the schools of that tradition in which the students surrender themselves to their teachers. Teachers should also bring back the glory of this very noble mission as educators and devote themselves completely for the welfare and well-being of their students. The parents and teachers can make all the difference in the life of their children. But the law enacting and enforcing agencies should not do anything which proves to be detrimental to the strength of this relationship.
I remember the days when the parents did not interfere in the relationship between the teacher and the taught but the situation has changed rapidly in the last twenty years and the seed of doubt has developed between them (which did not leave the children unaffected). This is not good for our children. The teachers and the parents should take it on themselves that the pious relationship between them and the children is not encroached upon and spoiled by somebody else who consider themselves the champion of change and child rights. Nobody can think and do better for the children than their parents. This should be understood and realized by all. Realize someone very loving and close to you is getting spoiled and your hands are tied. Let us not reach that situation. God is with us in the form of the children and we as parents and teachers must ensure that we look after them so well that nobody has any reason to spoil this relationship. Let us work together so that our children share their feelings with us and remain as close as possible so that they do not require anybody else to lighten the bonding between the parents and the teachers. My salutes to millions of parents and teachers who sacrificed their life for their kids and my appreciation and kudos to the children who respect and follow their parents and the teachers.