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HindustanTimes Tue,23 Sep 2014

Guidelines to be issued to check corporal punishment: Sibal

PTI  New Delhi, June 17, 2010
First Published: 20:11 IST(17/6/2010) | Last Updated: 20:19 IST(17/6/2010)

HRD Minister Kapil Sibal on Thursday said tough guidelines will be issued to check corporal punishment in schools in the backdrop of a 13-year-old student in Kolkata allegedly ending his life after being caned by his principal.

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Sibal has asked chairperson of National Commission Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) Shantha Sinha to frame and issue tough guidelines to get rid of corporal punishment in schools.

"The children are very precious to us. They are the future of our country. No child should be subjected to harassment and thereby get demotivated and be pushed out of the system," he told reporters here.

Thirteen-year-old Rouvanjit Rawla, a student of La Martiniere School in Kolkata, allegedly committed suicide after being caned by his principal.

Sibal said that the newly-enacted Right To Education Act prohibits corporal punishment. He discussed the issue with the NCPCR chief on Wednesday.

"Because we have a provision in the Act, we can issue guidelines. We will be in fact in discussion with NCPCR for issuance of guidelines," he said.

"We must get rid of corporal punishment. Children need to be included in the system. I think there is so much change in the methodology and the way we deliver education," he said.

The NCPCR had already issued guidelines in 2007. But those rules are not enough to check the menace.

Sibal said the school must take responsibility in the event a student gets prominently damaged following corporal punishment.

"Ultimately, the school has to take responsibility. In the event there is corporal punishment and somebody gets prominently damaged, somebody has to take responsibility," he said.

Sometimes such incidents drive students to commit suicide, he said.

"But there should be a process through which there should be inquiry about the circumstances of the death in case of a suicide. In the event anybody is found culpable, then the possible course of action should follow," he said.


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