Society for the Protection of the Rights of the Child (SPARC) organized a Session on to observe International Day to End Corporal Punishment of Children.
The event facilitated dialogue on implementation of required measured to safeguard our children from this violent practice.
Renowned Child Rights Activists and Civil Society representatives spoke on the said agenda to achieve safe and prospering environment for children.
Ms. Kishwar Zehra Member National Assembly , mentioned that at provincial level, with exception of Sindh, there is dearth of legislation work.
This new law is a beacon of hope in realizing the protection of our children from heinous act of corporal punishment. He added that legislation is not the complete solution for eradicating corporal punishment.
Teacher training curriculum must include modules that build empathy while educating teachers on the link between corporal punishment and students’ mental health development.
Ms. Shumaila Muzammil Project Manager SPARC, mentioned that Pakistan is among the 69 countries of the world who are still trying to eradicate it in educational institutions.
On 23rd February 2021, the National Assembly of Pakistan passed ‘ICT Prohibition of Corporal Punishment Bill’ effectively banning all forms of corporal in formal/informal educational institution and child care institutions comprising of rehabilitation centers, foster centers or any other institution.
It is a significant milestone in the realization of Pakistan’s commitment to United Nations Convention on the Rights of Child.
Mr. Iqbal Ahmed Detho, Member Sindh NCRC added that though Sindh is the only province to have special law for prohibition of Corporal Punishment in school setting both public and private sector and implementation Rules of act yet to be notified.
He urged that structures like Child Protection Committees in schools, District Coordination Committees at District level along with strengthening child Protection units where such complaints are referred by parents and communities.
Ms. Simab Asif Educationist, the state must provide trainings on alternative disciplinary approaches to equip teachers of formal and religious schools with the necessary skills to replace corporal punishment.
Trained teachers can then use platforms like Parent-Teacher Meetings to inform parents of the danger of corporal punishment at homes thus effectively eliminating this practice from society.
Student Noor e Sehar one of child rights club members says We children need open platform where we can raise our issues. said that the use of corporal punishment is deeply rooted in our traditions and social norms, and therefore results in weak or no enforcement of the existing laws.
Mr. Muhammad Kashif Mirza manager Media and communications In Pakistan, corporal punishment act as ‘compounding factor’ to 44% of the children between age of 5 and 16 who are out-of-school.
It is considered a “normal” part of childhood and is openly recognized as the rights of parents, guardians, teachers, religious instructors, (illegal) employers, or others in charge. Scientific evidence links corporal punishment to mental health problems and behaviors associated with violent tendencies in adulthood.
Physical punishment in childhood leads to the depression and anxiety in adulthood risking heightened vulnerability to radicalization.
The key development includes cancellation of Section 89 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) that had allowed for physical punishment in case carried out by teacher or guardian .