It’s been a tragic week for Bangalore’s children. On Monday morning, a van ferrying students, which was rushing to make it before school bell, rammed a lorry injuring three young boys.
Tuesday brought two grim stories where the spectre of corporal punishment raised its ugly head: six children — all aged between three and five — were branded with a hot spatula in a kindergarten in Whitefield, while a nine-year-old had his face smashed against the ground by his furious teacher, severely injuring his jaw.
The branding incident, where an attendant resorted to cruelty to discipline or control the children, shocked parents across the city. On the same day, in Yeshwantpur, an 11-year-old boy was crushed under a gate which fell on him when he went to fetch his ball that had rolled into the compound of a kalyana mantapa under renovation.
The Hindu speaks to experts, tracks the follow-up action taken by authorities — the police and the Education Department. We examine the guidelines that must ensure safety of children in public places, and the need to sensitise and regulate vehicles such as buses and autorickshaws that ferry children to school.