If Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina were to outlaw corporal punishment, Bangladesh would not only get closer to becoming the Sonar Bangla nation that her legendary father had envisioned, but it would also permanently etch her name in the hearts of the people with love and respect for protecting their children. There is no denying that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has elevated herself to legendary status in world politics. Along with being one of the most powerful leaders in the region, she is also the most powerful person in the history of Bangladesh.
The government should classify the happy faces of Bangladeshi children as an "endangered species" and provide them with protection.
Kashmir did just that for its heaven-sent seedlings. The law now protects children's smiles, which were once considered endangered.
The use of corporal punishment and other types of child abuse in schools is forbidden, and offenders face jail time and fines.
While many nations shamefully continue to be oblivious to the cries of anguish and despair coming from their children, Kashmir has made GIANT strides forward, reacted responsibly, and is leading by example.
Sweden first outlawed corporal punishment 44 years ago. The phrase "if they're not old enough to vote, they're of little interest and of no value" has persisted to maintain validity over the years.
One would have thought that Sweden's example would have quickly brought about a change in how children are treated around the world.
There are only 65 countries in the world where corporal punishment is prohibited in all its forms, but political leaders everywhere frequently declare, "children are our future." What hypocrisy!
Kashmir's Director of School Education said: "the negative consequences of corporal punishment not only hinders the learning and development of the affected children, but also creates an environment of fear and hostility within the Educational Institutions."
He went on to say corporal punishment has an ill effect on the mental health of the child.
Three years in jail
Now, if a child is assaulted, abused, exposed, or neglected in a way that results in physical or mental suffering, the offender could face up to three years in prison and a fine of Rs. 5 lakh.
The duration of the confinement may be increased if the child becomes physically disabled, suffers from a mental illness, becomes mentally incapable of performing daily tasks, or poses a threat to life or limb.
The most prevalent type of violence, abuse, and verbal and physical harassment against children worldwide is corporal punishment. Spanking, slapping, pinching, pulling, twisting, and hitting with or without an object are just a few of the possible methods (among others).
It might involve yelling and screaming, calling the child names, and belittling them in addition to making the child consume unpleasant substances like mud, soap, chalk, or hot spices. Making kids assume uncomfortable positions such as kneeling, holding house bricks in both hands, standing with a school bag on their heads, holding their ears through their legs, or leaning against a wall in a chair-like position. The sickening list goes on and on.
Some school administrators, teachers, and imams have creative ideas for how to torture children and make their lives miserable. They dig up these from the depths of their septic tank minds.
The Talimul Quran Mahila Madrasha in Kadamtali, however, where girls were permanently scarred, must receive the coveted Gold Trophy award (so far). Fourteen children who adored Allah stood side by side as their deranged "teacher" shamelessly proceeded down the line branding them with a hot spatula like animals on the calves of their legs. The smell of the burning human flesh would have been enough to cause the students extreme stress. Imagine entrusting such an insane person with your beloved and cherished child... but it's hard to tell until it is too late.
Numerous hapless children have received corporal punishment over the years because the "teacher" wasn't trained to understand that many kids who struggle in school have special needs, such as learning disabilities, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, mild developmental delays, etc.
If a "teacher" doesn't lead by example, how can they expect their students to behave as they would wish?
We do not love our children because they are good, but we want them to be good because we love them. We need to continuously show them our respect and admiration until the day comes when they return it to us.
Healthy relationships should always be promoted among students and teachers in school and between parents and their children in the home.
There is no denying that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has elevated herself to legendary status in world politics. Along with being one of the most powerful leaders in the region, she is also the most powerful person in the history of Bangladesh.
The Padma Bridge, the Metro Rail, and many other advancements, all of which richly merit standing ovations and thunderous applause, proudly attest to her remarkable economic achievements.
Building actual monuments to honor people is viewed as inappropriate in a country that practices Islam. I believe, however, that banning corporal punishment would be the best way to honor Bangabandhu and elevate the country in the minds and hearts of the populace and gain kudos throughout the world.
Even though Bangladesh's children are repeatedly referred to as its most prized possession and greatest assets, corporal punishment is still practiced, which is absurd.
If Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina were to outlaw corporal punishment, Bangladesh would not only get closer to becoming the Sonar Bangla nation that her legendary father had envisioned, but it would also permanently etch her name in the hearts of the people with love and respect for protecting their children.
And that would be far superior than all the man-made structures that dot Bangladesh's landscape put together.
Without first eradicating the demonic culture of corporal punishment, Sonar Bangla would be impossible to achieve.
Sir Frank Peters is a former newspaper and magazine publisher and editor, an award-winning writer, royal goodwill ambassador, humanitarian, human rights activist, Honorary Member of the Bangladesh Freedom Fighters and an esteemed foreign friend of Bangladesh
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