Corporal punishment in schools must end, says HRW | Pakistan Today

Corporal punishment in schools must end, says HRW

International rights organisation, Human Rights Watch (HRW), has urged that the Pakistan government should consider introducing measures and laws to put an end to corporal punishment in schools.

“Pakistan government should work on a law on a priority basis to end cases of extreme corporal punishment in schools. A place of learning should not be feared at all,” HRW said.

They also mentioned the recent most case of Hunain Bilal, a 17-year-old student in Lahore who died on September 5 due to injuries inflicted by one of his teachers at school.

All accounts gathered from his friends suggested that teacher tortured him for not memorising his lesson. “His head was hit against a wall, repeatedly,” recalled one of a fellow student.

HRW further insisted that the recent death of Hunain should work as a wake-up call for the government and they should not let it happen again by introducing a law in this regard.

“An environment of fear impedes learning and in the long run can leave an impact on the brain permanently. Pakistan faces an education emergency. Nearly 22.5 million Pakistani children are out of school, most of them girls, and corporal punishment remains a significant reason,” the statement further reads.

HRW also quoted data from Pakistani child rights group, Society for the Protection of the Rights of the Child (SPARC), which shows corporal punishment causes up to 35,000 Pakistani children to drop out of school every year.

“Pakistan has ratified international conventions prohibiting the use of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, both physical and mental. In Punjab province, the government and school officials are required to take disciplinary action against teachers who inflict violence, though that order is often ignored,” the HRW statement further states.