Wednesday, July 25, 2007

How protective can one be?

While going to work, when I stop to swipe my entry card at the DND flyway to enter Noida, we usually get complimentary HT newspapers. And when I take it, as a habit I take a glance at the main headline before placing it on the side seat on which my lunch bag and my purse are happily sitting.

So today, when I saw the headline I got angry! Really angry and upset thinking where the world is coming too. The heading was "School staff abuse child for 3 months". It literally shook me up and made me think is my son really as safe as I think him to be?

I know lot of us have been contemplating about this topic and had their own views and apprehensions on it. However, I don't know why, I was a bit nonchalant about it. I used to think there's a limitation to which we can protect our children. And I still think so.

I had always believed in mothering and not smothering. I always believed in the idea that do not try to over protect a child. Let them venture out and face the issues. As there are certain things which are best learnt by your own experience. Me and my sisters have all been brought up with this fundamental and I very much go by it too! I've travelled alone in a bus at the age of 6 years. I was in class 1 then. And that too in a place like Ghaziabad where school was about 15 KMs from home.

I had always believed in the idea that we should do whatever we can which is in our control. Rest we should leave for destiny as whatever has to happen will happen. But every single day incidents like these, the one I just spoke about, shatter my belief bit by bit.

Why are humans becoming animals? Sometimes I feel I should not even compare them with animals. It will be degrading enough for animals too probably. What were those guys thinking, what was running in their minds when they were sodomising that 10 year young child? Don't they have their own kids? Have they ever imagined their kids being molested like that? What would they do? Probably they do so to their own children too!

And this is not only what appalled me. The worst was that the newspaper states that these people are back to their work as usual. They worked in the same school this child goes to and they used to torture the child in the school premises itself. I just shudder at the thought it it.

And not to leave out HT from it, what was the editor thinking putting a happy & smiling picture of Renuka Chowdhary along with her statement denouncing such acts? Isn't it common sense to put pictures that convey or relate to the content? If they didn't have a not so happy picture of Renuka Chowdhary, was it necessary to put a picture?


  1. Yes , we should not be over protective , coz if we do we will hamper their personality.They will not develop confidence and will never be independent. And will never be able to decide right and wrong will may a;so lead them to fall prey someday.

    Thats the very reason I worry abt HOW DO WE PROTECT OUR KIDS ..without overdoing.

  2. I think protectiveness should come with a caution that kids would need to stand up to society even at very young age, while going to school, college, public places etc.

    One of my relatives was too protective about their kids and by the time his son reached college he could barely catch a bus. Such a person is vulnerable to abuse and cheating.

    I think the most I learned is by observing my parents, their precautions and interactions with both strangers and friends.

  3. This piece of news made my blood boil. How come those folks were allowed to go back to their work?was there no action taken?As much as we have to empower the child and raise him to be independent such news really scare the wits out of me. The mere thought that people are capable of thinking and acting in such a perverted way sickens me and makes me all the more scared about letting our kids out into such a world. It's not good to be over protective yes but then in the current situation its important you empower the child about the dangers out there too.

  4. These cruelties have unfortunately been happening since a long long time. Only we are now more open minded and do not hide the misdeed or even worse condemn the child or any victim instead of the evildoer. And the media of mass communication play an important role in this. As we get to know every small incidence through them.
    This is also confirmed by German statistics, which I believe, would very well apply to India or any other part of the world.

    And humas are the only ones who can have such corrupt minds, animals are too pure for that. Unless, like in some instances, mistreated by us again.

  5. Swati : A dliemma for every parents I guess. And I think each thing will have a solution in its own way which we will learn as time goes by. I hope so.

    Bhuwan : How can you teach children to stand up against such atrocities at the tender age of 5?

    PG : I guess you are right. These things have been happening from a long time but because of media we get to hear about incidents like these more often. But still my question remains..WHY? WHY? WHY?

  6. This issue is of grave concern. The Times of India has the following discussion page on the matter.

    Do you think schools should put escorts on every school bus, including hired ones?

  7. its absolutely disgusting... i still shiver when i think about nithari and it wasnt the first instance i heard of this sort. bombay developing suburbs are full of stories like these... and trust me, no one is safe.

    coming back to ur article, the problem is that 0.0001% of our urban population is possibly mentally sick and they need help but their sickness is overlooked or sweeped under the carpet because such people will plead forgiveness under the garb of having a daughter of a marriageable age or some equally pitiable reason.

    personally if such a thing ever happens to me again, i will have the nerve to kill that guy. having said that, i know thats not the right solution. but trust me, we are changing the social tide against such sickos with each article that gets printed in the media... these people need to feel fearful of the social isolation that will result from their actions.

    in retrospect, i only wish we all didn't isolate the abused child but isolated the abuser instead.

  8. I guess it is a late response. But still: I like Manasi’s response a lot.
    ~NM, Manasi has answered your why. I think here the question is more about what than why.
    Yes, a lot needs to be done. One of these things is surely that we give a thought to such things ourselves and discuss it among us. And your post was surely a very good thing in this direction.
    So, an escort cannot help a child being abused by its own father. In a large number cases of child abuse (a number times unknown) the culprits are family members, relatives, friends and people whom you least expect. That makes our role as a parent all the more important, difficult as well, to raise our child in a manner that they are self confident. And of course as all of us know how important it is talk to them and listen to them. Every day!

    The reason why I wrote my last comment was to pinpoint that we should not get OVERprotective. I am amazed at the amount of confidence our parents showed in us. Things were no differemt then, I am quite sure.