Monday, December 28, 2015

We reap what we sow

The news related to an incident reported in the newspapers regarding the drastic step taken by an engineer who killed his parents because of a silly reason as he could not qualify for a premier competitive examination. There have been incidents in the past also when people took such extreme steps of taking their own lives but this seems to the first case where the family members have been attacked by an individual due to failing in his efforts to have achieved what he aspired for. This is something which relates to murder but don’t we come across smaller incidents in our day to day life which might ultimately lead to such situations? Unfortunately, such incidents are forgotten by all soon because of so many other issues in their own lives and sometimes because some other issue becomes the focus of public. This incident happened when our parliament had almost unanimously passed a bill regarding juvenile crime. While most members of parliament were in favor of the amendment but some raised very pertinent issues which require immediate attention by all concerned. This is true that no reason justifies the heinous crimes committed by anybody, be it an adult or teenager but the question to be answered without getting emotionally influenced is why children get involved in such acts. If we consider specifically Nirbhay`s case then the dreadful crime involved the people who were less than 18 years of age. In addition to the punishment, should not the law makers and the society be looking for the cause as to why the innocent girl was killed? No punishment can bring her back but shouldn’t everyone try that such incidents do not get repeated? And we should also realize and accept that only law cannot help us achieve that goal. We need to sensitize our self and also our children specially the boys. Remember no child is born with those traits and instincts which are displayed later in life. All the children when born are absolutely innocent and born good human beings. This can be proved by considering the activities of the children till the age of 9/10 years that they behave almost in the same manner when it comes to being very close to the parents or their demands for different things. These children respect and follow the instructions and advise of the adults around them (be it the teachers or the parents) almost 100 percent. They are very close to the mothers and always worry about them. Try a child to remain away from the mother for few days and one can easily make out the despondency on the face of the child. But what happens when the child is of 15-16 years of age and starts moving away from the parents who had been his role models right from the birth? Let us try to understand the reasons which are many but we will focus on the most important ones. In today’s time, most of the children live in nuclear families and both the parents working. Now the parents have very little time to be with their children physically and to compensate for that deficit, they try to provide them all the material things which might make children feel happy for the time being. In many a cases, at later stage, children start demanding the things of their liking whether required or not. In this situation also many parents fulfill their demands to make the kids feel happy though they understand it very well that this is not the right approach. This makes children habitual of getting anything which they want by any means which may not be right from the society's point of view. Now the question may be asked that in case of Nirbhaya, the children involved in the crime were not from high status/ income family background then what made them indulge in such a crime. Some members of our parliament were right when they raised the issue of lack of education and proper employment. If we all try to see the condition of unauthorized colonies in the metros and bigger cities, then we can very easily understand the mindset with which the children are born, in those colonies and the fact that they grow with the same. There may be just one room (make shift with plastic sheets etc.) in which the entire family lives. They cook, eat and sleep in the same room and the children see everything what their parents do and the verbal fight they might have which each other because of their socio economic condition. There are number of such one room huts and every shed has the same condition and environment. When these children meet each other outside their so called one bedroom hut, they share the same kind of thinking with each other. The most venerable case might be of the girl child in such cases. These children do not get an opportunity to have good education and always exposed to very negative things happening around them which might include the father consuming alcohol, committing physical violence against the woman of the family etc. When such children grow in these conditions, then how does the society expect them to be behaving in more decent manner? Try to analyse the background of such children who are found involved in committing the crime, it would invariably be established that the environment in which these children grew was responsible for what they did. This is true that the one who commits crime have to own the responsibility of that, but how can those who made them to learn in such negative environment, can be left scot free. Should the people responsible for fulfilling the fundamental rights of healthy living as provided by our constitution not be held responsible for such situation to arise? Should they also not share the blame of such incidents?
If we have to root out such crimes from our society then the people should be provided those basic things which are necessary for the human beings and these includes proper shelter, education, food and employment. If these things are provided then we may not be dependent solely on the law and the punishment.
But this is not true that the crimes are committed by the people from lower socio economic background but the kids from so called high profile family backgrounds also get involved in such crimes. For that the parents have to understand that the way they behave at home and in the society has huge impact on their kids. If a child does not listen to the advise of the parents, then there must have been something lacking on the part of parents or the adults of the family and children learnt it from there. If the father or the mother uses foul language with other people then the child will follow the same. If the parents value and respect their parents then the children will automatically learn to respect their parents. If the husband and wife fight with each other or behave in a negative way, the children will get affected by that also. If the parents value money and the material things acquired by them as a result of hard work put in by them, then the children will learn the importance of hard work.
There have also been large numbers of cases reported from Kota regarding suicides committed by many young children who come to that place to realize dreams and in many cases the dreams of their parents. The parents want them to qualify the competitive examination even if they have to sell off their valuables and in some cases the land to manage the exuberant fee of the coaching centers (some people call them as dream sellers). When few of them are not able to take the pressure of studies and are fed up with the living conditions, they resort to that extreme step which is a shame for all of us. On the one hand CBSE and some other boards are trying to reduce the pressure of studies on children but on the other hand such coaching centers (which have their presence in almost all cities now-a-days) do just opposite of this. Many children from such backgrounds grow as frustrated individuals and cannot accept failure in their life. The parents must understand that every child is different and has the potential of achieving something great in life which may not necessarily be the field in which the parents want the child to excel but some other field. If the children are allowed to pursue the field of their choice and the parents support that, the issue of extreme disappointment will be taken care of up to a large extent.
My request to all the parents and teachers is that let the government do what best can be done by it but we should have faith in our children because they are God sent gift to us and gift by God is always precious and good. If something negative happens to this gift then for that God or the child should not be blamed but we should own that blame because the child learnt all those things from us and not from anybody else. If we can provide good environment to the children at home and in the schools, then there is no reason that they will not prove to be great citizens of this land and show the right path to the world in the pursuit of excellence.


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  2. The sentence in this article "The teacher would have to transform self to Guru who burns self to enlighten the path of children". This is real essence of the article, even I agree with this, as a teacher we are the role models for the society. Parents, students look at us with lots of expectations. We have to teach them with are actions, experiences and regular communication that violence cannot be any solution of a problem
    thank u sir for motivating every time in all possible ways.

    Shilpa Bafna

  3. Respected Sir
    It is undoubtedly a thought provoking article.As it is imperative for all of us to take the onus and consider it our duty as a teacher and parent to find ways to help children tackle this menace.Rightly said by you,situation+response=results.Therefore let's collaborate to achieve desired results.Thank you so much for this food for thought at least it will give us an insight into our follies as teachers and parents.

    Vidhi Bulani