Editor-in-Chief, Arindam, anguishes about the unsafe and insecure future that our children would inherit if we do not wake up to the growing crimes against children. He introduces the Special Feature, wherein Ratan Mani Lal and Vedatrayee Dutta take a hard look at this menace. He sees light in Tapati Sinha’s piece on Shantiniketan. Read more exclusively in Different Truths.
If our children are not safe in homes or in schools, where can they be safe? The situation is grim. Two ghastly incidents in the National Capital Region (NCR), shook us to the core, last week. A seven-year-old boy was brutally murdered in the school toilet, in the crème de la crème Ryan International School, Gurgaon. It’s CEO, via various TV channels, stated unabashedly that the school is as much a victim of the attack.
The perpetrator was the conductor of a bus. The conductor, bus driver, etc. shared the same toilet, much to the shock and dismay of one and all.
The Apex Court had to step in and issue instructions to the Centre, Haryana state governments, et al when the victim’s father knocked its doors. The school authorities, particularly, members of the Pinto family, owners of the school, were to move the Supreme Court, according to media reports.
In debates after debates, the media was crying hoarse. But the said CEO was seemingly unaffected, armed with a battery of lawyers. His attitude, to say the least, added insult to injury.
Two days after the murder, a five-year-old was raped in an empty classroom, by a peon, of Tagore Public School, Shahdara, East Delhi. There are many unanswered questions, which the school authorities must answer.
Last week, a video clip of a teenage boy in Pathways School, Noida, slapping another boy, in the presence of other students went viral on social media. Here the perpetrator of the crime was a peer, a classmate. The slapping bet video shocked everyone. The school authorities issued a letter to all parents, which bordered on a threat, shifting the blame, instead of owning up the serious lapse.
We, in Different Truths, bring to you a Special Feature on crime against children. It’s shocking that the louder we cry, the uglier does the next case(s) become.
Ratan Mani Lal, a Lucknow-based senior journalist, points out that several studies and reports have indicated that children are prone to exploitation even within homes, and most of the cases of molestation are perpetrated by someone the victims have known closely. It indicates a dangerous trend related to children’s safety, in his hard-hitting article, ‘Difficult Time for Those Having a School-going Child’.
In her article, ‘Red Alert: Future is Dead!’ Vedatrayee Dutta, a young Kolkata-based lawyer, states that the recent shameful cases of an International school in Gurgaon where a seven-year-old boy was brutally murdered in the toilet of the school, a famous school in Delhi where a small girl was raped by the school staff and the slapping case of a school in Noida, are skid marks in the criminal history of India, which have left the country with little scope of revival of its morale.
Though not a part of the Special Feature, Tapati Sinha, in her two-part article, which is her regular column, tells us what a model school should be like. We perhaps see a ray of light in Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore’s educational institution in Shantiniketan. The answer is in ‘Our Shantiniketan: Where the World Meets in a Single Nest – II’.
Similarly, Shail Raghuvanshi’s regular column, News in Verse, recasts the pathos of the Rayan school, in her article, ‘A Child murdered in Ryan; Tom Alter fights Cancer; Sasikala Ousted; Blast in London Tube and Rohingya Refugees’.
We hope and pray for a light at the end of the dark tunnel. We do not want our children to inherit an unsafe and insecure future, where their lives, limbs, and dignities are in perpetual danger.
Photos from the Internet
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