A young teenager of fourteen who battled for his life, for the last two weeks has succumbed to corporal punishment.
The boy, Ajay Kumar, was a Class VIII student of the government-run Sarvodaya Higher Secondary School in east Delhi's East Vinod Nagar. Since October 23, he had been on ventilator support, after he was beaten up by his teacher.
"My son's fault was that he was scribbling in his notebook and overwriting his teacher's signature," says the boy's father Satya Prakash, a PWD employee. According to reports, after the teacher beat him, Ajay collapsed on the floor. "We were called to the school... He had an injury on his neck and had problem breathing. Since then, he was in the ICU," said Prakash. The boy died in north Delhi's St. Stephen's hospital, where he had been shifted to, from a nursing home.
"We are conducting an investigation before making any arrests. We have sent the body for post mortem and also looking into the medical history of the boy," says Ajay Chaudhary, DCP, east district. Education Minister Arvinder Singh was quoted: "There is no scope for corporal punishment in our schools. I will order an inquiry and if the teacher is found guilty, I will take strict action."
Another incident, less grave, but on the note of educators losing their reason to overriding emotions occurred in Varandarappalli, Thrissur district of Kerala.
A three-year-old girl was "forced" to drink urine by non other than her class teacher. This happened in an 'Anganwadi' (Panchayat-sanctioned playschool).
According to official sources, anganwadi worker Mary Dominic gave the body fluid to the girl in a spoon, after she wetted her dress while sleeping in class. Kerala social welfare secretary Usha Titus confirming the incident, was quoted: "The lady apparently believed that children could be cured of the habit of wetting in sleep if they are administered a spoonful of urine. So when the girl passed urine in her sleep, she tried her own way to cure it."
Yet, when the child reported the incident to her father, he submitted a written complaint to the Panchayat. "Our department came to know about the matter on November 3 and the Anganwadi worker was immediately placed under suspension. A detailed inquiry will be held into the incident and punitive action taken against her if found guilty," Titus adds. Meanwhile, the child's father has now withdrawn the complaint as the anganwadi worker is reported to have pleaded with him to stop the proceedings. Official sources have disclosed that the woman is issueless and not very sound of mind. She would get angry very soon, they observed.