Parents should approach school if the child is faring poorly. Privately run tuition centers don't come under RTE

Bengaluru tuitions horror Parents continued with teacher despite physical assault on kidsImage: Bruised back of girl who was assaulted by tuition teacher
news Assault Thursday, August 04, 2016 - 13:10

She does not complain much, but it is evident it hurts. She is restraining her emotions through an uneasy silence. After all, which 9-year-old can withstand brutal lashes on her back? “Doctors have prescribed an ointment for the pain, but what about the mental scars?  What can heal them?” asks Harish, Bhavana’s uncle.

On Tuesday, when Bhavana turned up without doing her homework, her private tuition teacher Latha, took out a belt and lashed her on the back.

Latha has since been arrested and given bail. But the incident has shaken the family. What's surprising is that this is not the first time the little girl was beaten up by Latha, according to the family.

"A few months ago, the teacher had hit Bhavana. It was the the girl who asked her parents to put her into coaching classes, but she refused to continue. The teacher admitted that she had hit Bhavana and assured that she wouldn't do it anymore, so we relented and sent her back,” recounts Harish.

And that’s the reason why, on Tuesday, when the saw the injury, they did not hesitate to go to the police.

On Tuesday night, Bhavana had told her parents that she was beaten up when they came to pick her up at 8pm. They checked her hands and legs, and on finding no marks, they took her home.

"She did not cry at all, although there were clear signs of restraint in her emotions. We thought it must be something small. But when we went back home and removed her clothes, we saw her back filled with bruises," says Harish.

They went to confront the teacher, but her house was locked so they went to the police.

The Chairperson of Karnataka State Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (KSCPCR), Kripa Alva says that the commission has taken cognizance of the incident and has issued summons to the accused teacher. 

However, Niranjan Aradhya, Vice President of Center for Child and Law says that though corporal punishment is banned under Right to Education Act, there is no control over privately run tuition centers. 

"Since they are not registered, the case will not be booked under RTE and we wouldn't be able to take it up. However, there have been many cases in the past after the ban on corporal punishment. If the parents feel their children are faring poorly in academics they must bring it up with the school instead of putting such a young kid in a private tuition center," he says.

And it isn’t just Bhavana who was at the receiving end of Latha’s angry physical abuse, say parents.

Suresh Kumar, another parent, told The News Minute that his 10-year-old daughter Tejaswini was also beaten up a year ago. However, he continued to send her to tuition. “We continued to send her to tuition because she was finding it difficult to cope with the ICSE syllabus," he says.  

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