Physical Punishment as Excuse for Sexual Harassment – 2 Nov 10


I recently saw some numbers about education in India which are quite shocking. According to a study by Plan International, an organization that works for children’s rights all over the world, more than 65% of children in India experience physical punishment in their school.

Since 2000 there is an official law against physical punishment but unfortunately this is still happening in India. Children are beaten with hands and sticks, they stand for hours, sometimes even in the sun and in the report it is even mentioned that children are tied to their chairs so that they sit still. It is incredible but unfortunately it is the sad truth.

They interviewed more than 12500 children all over India and found that the state with the most violent punishment is U.P., Uttar Pradesh, the state we live in. Separately from physical punishment they found that more than 50% of children experience sexual harassment by their teachers.

Teachers who were asked about this subject say that they have a lot of responsibility. So they believe they have to hit and that it is good that they do. I believe they take out their frustration which has nothing to do with responsible behavior. Many teachers hit brutally and no matter it is boy or girl, old or young, strong or fragile. This is the reason why we hear again and again of children who had to be hospitalized after being hit by their teachers.

I have also seen teachers who, with the pretense of physical punishment, have touched girls in a way that no watching person would have called decent. It feels sometimes as if they want to realize some sick fantasies. It felt disgusting to me when I was young and it feels disgusting still today. Young minds and hearts are hurt, get wrong impressions from this world and who leaves this imprint? Teachers, those, who should prepare the young souls, equip them with everything they need to explore and develop in this world.

It is sad and we will keep on working against it.

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11 Replies to “Physical Punishment as Excuse for Sexual Harassment – 2 Nov 10”

  1. i am sorry its is too bad my teachers weren’t like that and i know how it feels to be a child and experience violence like that and it not being teachers

  2. Thank you Swami ji after reading your this article I really feel so angry to one of my teacher who always pinch me on my breasts if I ever did any thing wrong and he always did when I was at his home for tuition in person he was also my teacher at school but their he always took care of it that no body sees him doing this and I always felt so bed about it but some how I never said anything to anybody as I felt so bed even to talk about but I never had any respect or good feeling to that person. Today after reading you makes me at least write here my personal experience about it and totally agree to you that how long we need to fight for it. I am married now and two children but I always keep asking to my daughter if someone is doing something unusual because I never can forget that and I am always extra careful with this to my girl, at some point I even feel myself maybe doing and asking too much but I cannot stop or control myself to do this as I know what can happen and specially when I see my self I do not want my girl get any of this kind impressions in their life.

  3. it is so SICK!!!!! I just cant understand and really don’t even want to understand this perverted mind! How can someone do this to a Soul , how? We should ask our self what we can do that this will not happen anymore … no where in the World !!!!!TAKE ACTION !!!!!!!!!!

  4. Oh this is very sad. Very sad. If the attitude of parents and community members towards physical punishment of children becomes intolerance, the schools will change.

  5. It is sad to hear this. I have heard lots about many countries, England and the US even dealing with students in this way not too long ago. the part I was unaware of was the sexual abuse. Of course it makes sense that if a teacher feels they can do what they want to a young person, that one of those things will be sexual. There has to be a certain mindset of the people in general that allows them to believe in this kind of behavior. It is a mindset that has to spread much farther than just teachers in regards to students I think, but it can start with teachers. And if you start with teachers, you have to start with the headmasters of the schools being willing to take action if a student reports a teacher for wrong doing. The problem sounds so big. i don’t even know how it would be addressed. Long road ahead for change I think. But of course it’s necessary.

  6. I remember when I was 11 or 12 years old, we 6 children, 4 boys and 2 girls of nearly the same age, were getting extra lessons from a teacher. We all sat on the floor around the teacher which was quite normal. I noticed that always both girls, who were our neighbours, too, sat on both sides left and right of the teacher and we 4 boys sat in front of him. Whenever the teacher got a chance, he gave punishment, which was usual and often because we gave wrong answers or could not remember the lesson or did not do homework. We boys get different punishments or were hit by the teacher but the girls got a different way of punishment. His hand started moving on the girl’s thigh under her skirt and with 2 finger he pinched their soft skin at the inner thigh and they screamed from pain and got tears on their eyes. And they were 11-12 of age. I never can forget. these memories and i don’t know where those girls are now but I bet they would not forget this either. Horrible. But still, it is real, I saw it myself and I know it is still going on.

  7. Swami Ji,Sounds like a hard story to tell. And it is a shame. Every bone in my body is chanting very sexist things against men when I read stuff on this subject. I know it affects boys sometimes too, and they are preyed on also, my mind just reels at how often it happens to females, in a sense it is almost expected.
    But this kind of quiet violence against children is… well I guess I could use words like shame, outrage, injustice, disgusting, abomination… they’ve been used before. It just makes me sad and I hope it will be different some day.

  8. In the U.S., many parents choose to “spank” their children as punishment (hitting them on the butt). Some parents even use belts or other items to whip their children as punishment. I believe this is less common every year. But it is interesting to speak with different people about it. I, personally, was never spanked or touched in any violent way by my parents. Therefore, I strongly disagree with it as a form of punishment. However, some people I know were spanked as children and they somehow agree with it because it is how they were raised. They say that they learned how to behave because they disliked being hit so much. But I think there are ways to teach your children how to behave well without using any violence or physical harm. But it is interesting how people carry on traditions simply because it is what they’ve known as normal in their lives.

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