Thursday, May 31, 2012

NCPCR completes 5 years- Releases Guidelines on Corporal Punishment -

NCPCR completes 5 years- Releases Guidelines on Corporal Punishment | National Legal Research Desk:

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The guidelines include some measures for affirmative action in schools towards positive development of children, for positive engagement with children, for creating an environment conducive to learning and for mechanisms and processes to give children a voice and engage in the process of creating a positive environment as well as for accountability and multi-sectoral responsibility. It considered physical punishment, mental harassment and discrimination of children causing both physical and mental harassment as corporal punishment.

“The release of the Guidelines on eliminating Corporal Punishment in Schools is a commendable initiative by the Commission. These guidelines will serve as an important tool for sensitisation and creating awareness on the subject amongst various stakeholders,’’ said Ms. Krishna Tirath, Honorable Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Women and Child Development, while releasing the guidelines.  “The guidelines released today are a comprehensive documentation of the perceptions about corporal punishment, and guidelines for affirmative action in schools for positive development of children,’’ she added.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Shantha Sinha, Chairperson, NCPCR said: “the five years of experience in the Commission has shown that four essential management principles– decentralization, flexibility, institution-building processes and convergence — should inform and guide the programme implementation to ensure universal coverage of children in the 0-18 years age group.’’

“The Commission is entrusted with a vast mandate, covering a whole gamut of child rights. I would especially like to congratulate the Commission for moving away from welfare approach to a rights-based perspective, and thus imparting added strength to making the child rights justifiable,’’ said Dr Kishore Singh, UN Special Rapporteur on Right to Education in his Foundation Day lecture.

Smt. Neela Gangadharan, Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development also spoke on the occasion. “The release of the guidelines is both timely and relevant. The children of our country should also enjoy the fruits of development. The ministry recognizes that violation of child rights is not only the violation of human rights but also a largely an underreported obastacle to child’s development,’’ Smt. Gangadharan said.

Section 4 - Definition of Corporal Punishment

All forms of corporal punishment are harmful to the child.  Currently, there is no statutory 
definition of corporal punishment of children in Indian law.Definition of corporal punishment 
can at best be only indicative. In keeping with the provision of the RTE Act corporal punishment 
could be classified as physical punishment, mental harassment and discrimination. 

4.1 Physical punishment is understood as any action that causes pain, hurt / injury and discomfort to a child, however light. Examples of physical punishment include but are not restricted to the 
4.1.1 Causing physical harm to children with the hand (hitting, kicking, scratching, pinching, 
biting, pulling hair, boxing ears, smacking, slapping, spanking,) or with any implement 
(cane, stick, shoe, chalk, dusters, belt, whip, giving electric shock etc.);
4.1.2 Making children assume an uncomfortable position (standing on bench, as wall chair, 
standing with bags on head, holding ears through legs, kneeling etc.)
4.1.3 Forced ingestion of anything (for example: washing soap, mud, chalk, hot spices etc.)
4.1.4 Detention in the classroom, library, toilet or any closed space in the school.
4.2 Mental harassment is understood as any non-physical treatment that is detrimental to the 
academic and psychological wellbeing of a child. It includes but is not restricted to the following:
4.2.1 Sarcasm that hurts or lower the child’s dignity;
4.2.2 Calling names and scolding using humiliating adjectives, intimidation;
4.2.3 Using derogatory remarks on the child, including pinning of slogans;
4.2.4 Ridiculing the child on background or status or parental occupation;
4.2.5 Ridiculing the child on health status of self or the family  – especially  HIV an d 
4.2.6 Belittling a child in classroom due to his/her inability to meet the teacher’s expectations 
of academic achievement. 
Guidelines in PDF can be downloaded from here

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