Living in an age where education, health care and leadership have surrendered their nobility to a more practical, profitable approach, we awake each morning to shocking results. Where cold commercialisation has eroded ethical values, commercial cinema ironically seems to hold dangerously simplistic cures for all woes. So we have a medical student slain in self-styled revenge, a teacher who meets a tragic end in her school, three “honourable” ministers sharing dishonourable moments in the Legislative Assembly, and a battered baby struggling to live.

Asha Mathew,

Chennai

It was horrifying to read about the tragic end to a teacher's life, and how a boy's life and his parents' dreams have been shattered (Feb. 9). We have all learnt a very good lesson — that teachers are not devils and children are not always angels.

The influence of cinema/media (as reported) in this case is only very minimal. The main factors are because we have curbed the right and freedom that a school can use in educating the child in a wholesome manner. This incident or similar cases that have happened are the result of fussy parents, pampered children and arrogance shown towards the school and its authorities.

Thushara Abraham,

Chennai

It may be the rarest of the rare cases in living memory, but is it not the duty of a teacher to reprimand students who fare badly academically? Why did the boy behave the way he did and who is to blame? These are pertinent questions that need to be answered by all parents who wish a bright future for their children.

K.G. Koru Kuttan Nair,

Cherpalcheri

Was it wrong that the teacher wanted her student to shine in his studies? Though killings by students are not uncommon in the West, it appears that this terrible culture has started invading Indian soil. Thursday's gruesome incident is also a pointer to the need to curb negative scenes in films and TV serials.

A. Jainulabdeen,

Chennai

These days, discipline is a cosmetic term. As a result, students are behaving recklessly and are not amenable even to mild warnings by teachers. Child-care centres are now acting like human rights' groups and interfere in school-teacher management.

The teacher must be allowed to wield his authority. If India believes in following the school's principles that are being followed in the West — not punishing students for any unruly act — society must be ready to bear the consequences.

K.V. Raghuram,

Wayanad

Films that plant gruesome ideas in the minds of children and adults are a cause for concern. While it is true that not all viewers of such movies are necessarily instigated to commit a criminal act, cinema does form an important part in social reformation.

Usha Ramani,

Chennai

Film plots today are full of meaningless violence, hero/villain-worship, nonsensical incidents in the name of ‘bravery,' rampant eve-teasing, torture, dialogues with vulgar content and lewdness which only pollute young minds. A thorough scanning of their content is called for.

R. Sampath,

Chennai

Why this kolaveri? Films and tele-serials are to blame.

M. Srinivasan,

Chennai

As a professional psychotherapist, I've been treating an increasing number of cases for aggression, depression or learning disabilities. While it is natural for children to develop behavioural problems while coping with increasing competition on all spheres of life, it would augur well if institutions understand the gravity of increased violence in students and take steps to provide professional guidance.

Subodh Srivastava,

Chennai

There is hardly any movie by Bollywood which does not glorifiy violence/deviant behaviour. We must follow the norms of American films — age-specific information and synopsis of content.

Vipan Bhagat,

New Delhi

Mindless glorification of violence and needless depiction of blood and gore in the visual media and films will send the wrong message to impressionable minds that vengeance-induced killings are acceptable as a code of honour. Artistic freedom vis-a-vis violence must be exercised in a responsible manner.

V.N. Mukundarajan,

Thiruvananthapuram

Parents seem to have lost touch with their own children and have become ATMs for their children.

N. Nagarajan,

Secunderabad

I recollect the old Tamil film “Manavan (Student)” with actor Jaishankar in the lead role.

The film was about a beautiful and friendly relationship between a professor and a student. Television, videos, the Internet and cinema play a big role in spoiling the character of a child.

K.R. Chandrasekaran,

Chennai

India is today a sociologist's delight with ministers getting caught in the assembly watching obscene material and students displaying violent anger towards teachers.

Sankalp Pratap,

Kolkata

I was a teacher for 37 long years and have never heard of such a brutal happening.

Whatever happened to cordial student-teacher relationships? Is it cinema or television that is to blame? Is it parents who want their wards to become only doctors or engineers? Is it school managements which want only good results rather than better students?

E. Rajakumar Arulanandham,

Palayamkottai

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