It is an age-old saying that “Spare the rod, spoil the child” which means that physical punishment is the only way to mend the wrong doings of a child. It says that hitting a child for his mistakes can correct him. It is said that framing the character of a child is similar to making an earthen pot because it needs encouragement and support from within but also needs to be patted and corrected from the outside when there are faults. This way, the child is believed to become a person of substance with high ideals. It has been an age old practice in old methods of teaching to punish a child for his mistakes by hitting him or giving his physical punishment of other forms. In the ancient times, the students always feared such punishment and tried not to repeat such mistakes. The teachers always aimed to give proper training to their students and at the time were concerned about them and took care not to hurt them badly. The teacher- student relationship was that of respect and admiration in exchange of care and enlightenment.
Today, this relationship has been changed in various aspects. With the commercialization of education, the quality of teaching has gone down in some cases. Some teachers tend to inflict plain intentionally to their students for mistakes that can be rectified in a milder way. They tend to resort to extreme corporal punishment to correct a child. Corporal punishment, according to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, refers to any punishment in which physical force is used and intended to cause some degree of pain or discomfort. The intention of such punishment might be to correct the child and teach him a lesson, but it can also have a negative impact of humiliation and social embarrassment for the child. It can also make the child adamant, stubborn and rebellious. This might rather drift him towards more wrong acts instead of correcting him. Also, it instills a fear in the minds of some students and makes them reluctant towards learning or going to school. Many cases where corporal punishment has led the student to take drastic steps like suicidal attempts have been highlighted by the media. Many such teachers who resort to brutal immoral practices of inflicting pain into students have had to face serious scrutiny.
Many countries like Canada, Kenya, New Zealand, South Africa etc. have banned all forms of corporal punishment all over the nation. Many Indian schools take care not to resort to any such physical mode of punishment. Instead, measures like counseling or constructive hobbies are taken up to teach morals and values to students and even increase their comfort level at schools. The teachers are required o maintain a friendly and interactive atmosphere in their classes.
Corporal punishment, though not illegal in our country, yet it is avoided by most teachers.