There has not been any instance of Education Department rightly dealing with cases of corporal punishment at private unaided schools in the district, said Renni D’Souza, Director of PADI, an NGO is managing Childline (1098 and 2437795) of Dakshina Kannada.
Talking to reporters here on Monday, Mr. D’Souza said cases of corporal punishment have to be treated as a violation of Right to Education Act and the local Block Education Officer has to inquire into it. “Education Department officials do not enter the premises of private schools. I have not found officials considering corporal punishment as a case of violation of the Act,” he said.
One instance Mr. D’Souza pointed out was the case of corporal punishment of a child in a school in Bantwal a few weeks ago. “The department failed to act even after a report of the Child Welfare Committee.”
The child rights activist said instance of corporal punishment was not dealt seriously. Hence, they decided to register a criminal complaint against the teacher of a private school in Hirekala for allegedly making 23 children do sit-ups nearly 1,000 times. “Police are waiting for approval of the court for registering it,” he said. Since PADI started to operate Childline from September last year, the helpline has received 2,246 calls. Of this, 66 were related to physical and sexual abuse of children and 18 were related to children seeking emotional support and guidance. A majority of 749 calls have been those made to test the number, while 396 were related to those made as follow-up to pending cases. Of these calls, the Childline has found 171 cases of violation of child rights, he said.
PADI, Mr. D’Souza said, will be shortly opening an RTE cell that will exclusively deal with issues related to the Right to Education Act related cases. They were also working on distributing pamphlets and conducting workshops in schools across the district about alternative ways of teaching and avoiding corporal punishment. They will also hold more open sessions in schools to generate more awareness about the Childline, he said.
I have not found officials considering corporal punishment as a case of violation of the RTE
Child Rights Activist