Caning at La Martiniere, Calcutta…

  - June 19th, 2010 by Shalini Nambiar | Posted in Teachers   8 Comments »
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One is once again taken aback by the cruelty imposed on an innocent child by the Principal of the most prestigious school in Calcutta.

A lot of talks are going on and look at the sheer audacity of some people trying to put the blame on the little child. Some of the comment made by the alumunus is…

“If you look at a boy’s life, out of 365 days, he spends 210 days in school. Eighteen hours are everyday spent in environments other than the school. Why are we not looking at the different aspects which might have caused his death,” says Dr Ronen Roy, La Martiniere Alumnus.

Rouvan was caned by Chakravarthi on February 12. Four days later, he was found hanging in his room. In an interview to NDTV, Chakravarthi had admitted that he caned the boy, but said that linking the suicide to his corporal punishment is “stretching it”.

Have all theses guys’ gone nuts or are they do not have a conscience. Our society is backward due to people like these who still feel that a slap and a cane would make a child not repeat any wrong.

“… You have 16 minutes to find the culprit and you will be let off scot-free”, Sunirmal Chakraborty, principal of La Martiniere for Boys, told Rouvanjit Rawla on February 12.

In those 16 minutes, 13-year-old Rouvanjit was told to come up with the name of the boy who burst two crackers inside a classroom. Caned by the principal on February 8 for bunking class, Rouvanjit failed to meet the deadline. He returned home and allegedly hanged himself.

This is unacceptable from a Principal with all those degrees to flaunt off and admitting that he thinks caning helps him to discipline the child… Please, Please Principal Sir with all due respect I just want to ask you… do you have a conscience???  Don’t you think if educationists start behaving like this… what is the kind of society we are producing? Aren’t we supposed to be the nation builders? Is this the kind of society you want to see coming up who thinks caning is the best way to discipline people? Please reflect and think…

A younger child is not of the developmental age that enables them to grasp the underlying reason for the inflicted pain. They only develop fear of the pain, and of the school, which eventually evolves into mistrust. The act of caning is within the realm of normality to some; inherent in their belief that caning with the intent to discipline is their right..

The suggestion that it is intolerable to cane a defenseless child may be incomprehensible to such people. This instilled belief in the practice of caning is in most cases acquired from his or her upbringing. In young children, there can be no regulations or acceptable norms because it is wrong. One stroke may not result in chronic physical scarring, but it can do so emotionally. And yet the apparent reason for caning is to teach. By leaving emotional scars?? What bullshit is this??… I apologize for using such harsh words but my blood is boiling .

Caning of the young child is child abuse.

We cannot remain indifferent to the caning of young children. As a nation, we need to speak up and object vehemently to this mindless cruelty. Those who justify their action of caning young children need to be confronted and educated.

Will somebody go and make the Principal of this elite school aware that such punishments leads to

1. Abuse 2. It is degrading 3. It is psychologically damaging 4. It teaches the wrong lesson…

Such people who cane as per me are criminals and they  need to reflect that a child who resorts to troubling others is usually a child who is hyperactive and some children also do it for attention. But all in all it happens when a child in the classroom is not intellectually motivated. Children understand logical reasoning and instead of punishing them if a child is informed about the consequence of their wrong actions he would be much more disciplined. Discipline that needs to be instilled at a younger age is self discipline and no man can ever be improved by abusing, insulting, slapping or caning.

It’s an offense of the most demeaning nature and a principal of a school must realize that a caning done to a child to discipline him… what are its repercussions later. A child grows up thinking this is the best way to discipline and as an adult this behavior results in either bashing his wife, children or even road rage. It is often said that punishing a wrongdoer by inflicting pain conveys the message that violence is an appropriate way to settle differences or to respond to problems.

One teaches the child that if one dislikes what somebody does, it is acceptable to inflict pain on that person. It is often said that punishing a wrongdoer by inflicting pain conveys the message that violence is an appropriate way to settle differences or to respond to problems

School must take responsibility, agreed a child spend most of the time at home but he spends quite a lot of time at school and no educationist would deny the far flung influence a school has on a child.

I would love to hear what you all have to say as each one of us can make a difference to the society…

Shalini Nambiar,
Excelsior American School.

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June 19 2010 11:50 am | Teachers

8 Responses to “Caning at La Martiniere, Calcutta…”

  1. Priya Kejriwal Says:

    I totally agree with you Shalini. Caning, slapping, beating or inflicting any kind of pain to anyone is not a solution to any problem.Right kind of counselling at the right time and lots of love and concern would help a child more than fear of punishment .

  2. Kamna Datt Says:

    Corporal punishment is a primitive method of telling a child his or her mistakes and use of such means is nothing but barbaric. An Adolscent mind is very impressionistic and needs to be dealt with a lot of senstivity and care…unfortunately the head of the school failed to do so.

  3. Padmaja Says:

    The main problem with the education system of today is the importance given to the marks and the ranks. If most of the students of a school get admission into the best colleges would it be called as a prestigious school? I wonder what are the qualities that the said school possesses to call it prestigious.

    Trying to make a child understand things by caning and handing out corporal punishments surely shows the inability of the teachers to motivate the students. The scar on the skin might disappear after a few days, but the emotional scars that appear have a life long impact on the child. The child may either think that he deserves all that abuse or may end up abusing others.

    A very wrong message by the head of the institution. We need to condemn such acts by people in the name of authority.

  4. Debashis Sen Says:

    Caning in Indian schools is a legacy of the British Raj and it should be consigned to history. However it is easier said than done mainly because a vast number of teachers in our schools belong to the older generation to whom modern methods of teaching and disciplining children are unknown. This is particularly true of Anglo Indian schools like La Martiniere – plagued as they are by unmitigated corruption, lack of modern teaching infrastructure and hopelessly outdated and incompetent teachers like Sunirmal Chakrabarty. The Rouvanjit case should be an eye opener for parents in Kolkata to seriously ask themselves why they pay huge bribes to get their children admitted to schools like La Martiniere. It is pertinent to point out here that new age schools like DPS have better teaching infrastructure and competent teachers. Caning in such schools is unheard of because the teachers are conversant with modern methods of teaching and do not feel the need to adopt primitive methods like caning.

    Debashis Sen

  5. yang Says:

    we have another way to treat wayward children except useing violent methods.
    And How children’s parents really can do such a thing?Do they think it is normal?
    I suggest them to read the book 《anne of green gables》,then they will understand how to educate their children.

  6. Feng Says:

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  7. Feng Says:

    Thank you for this post. Funny how the universe gives you what you need. I was looking for new direction and came to your site. You continue to be a source of inspiration.

  8. aman Says:

    Dear maam,
    I am a student of La Martiniere For Boys Kolkata.
    As of caning is concerned I am against it.I think you must have grabbed most of the stories that have come on news channels .I would not like to go into how they work.Corporal punishment is not a part of our school.Secondly people of the school never justified caning and admitted it was a mistake ,including the principal.I would like to inform you about the facts of the case which I think you may be unaware of ( ) ….What Dr Ronen Roy wanted to tell was that in a perfectly healthy parent child relationship a child shares every problem he has with his parents. In this case that did not happen . I am sure that Mr Rawla should have been informed about what was happening in our school by Rouvan himself.Thus there was a communication gap between the family and Rouvan. There were 4 other teachers who were blamed for Rouvans death too. They did not ouch the child or abuse him in any way.I would like all of you to check facebook and search for support groups for La Martiniere…… you will find many ….. Thats because we knew what happened in school and we are not informed about the case by the media.There are many students in La Martiniere who have their middle name as “Martinian” in order to show support to the school.Corporal punishment is different and abatement to suicide is different.
    please read the link i have written so that you can be informed about the facts of the case.

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