Monty’s Indian Outlook – Issue 74

The Indian education system rarely spares the rod and a bizarre incident at a Surat private where schoolchildren were made to walk barefoot on fire and glass pieces only underscores this medieval system.

The schoolchildren between the ages of 10 and 14 at the Rivervale School were paraded IN FRONT OF THEIR PARENTS to ‘help them gain confidence’. There was not one single objection to the practice from one mother or father.

According to an unnamed source at the school, most of the children cried during their ordeal and some suffered injuries, but ‘their parents kept watching’. Think about that at next year’s Christmas party if some readers think their kids are being pushed too hard.

Corporal punishment is endemic in Indian schools, and as the case above shows, not only in general education. One of the most difficult decisions I have faced since relocating here is which school to choose, not unlike those in the UK, but the consequences of getting it wrong here are catastrophic.

Perhaps there are those that smack their child and think it right, perhaps there are those who believe that teachers hitting pupils makes ‘men/women’ out of them, but I think any adult who hits a child is a coward, and will be for life.

Naturally, my innate hypocrisy means that if anybody hit my boy I would go right round there and attempt to beat the shit out of that person, but sometimes a bit of adult-on-adult violence is justified. I’ll always believe that.

If I want my child to walk on fire and broken pieces of glass, I’ll send him to a circus-training school where he’ll be taught properly, but my wife and I have somewhat higher plans for the young chap. He’s actually quite funny, so we won’t stop him if he wants to be a clown.

Seriously though, take a bow everybody at Surat’s Riverdale school for your abusive policy and, in this land of Karma, let’s hope you burn and cut your feet at some pleasant time in the future.

As for the parents, I hope you burn in hell.

Monty (630 Posts)

Monty Munford has more than 15 years' experience in mobile, digital media, web and journalism. He is the founder of Mob76, a company that helps tech companies raise money and exit. He speaks regularly at global media events with a focus on Africa, writes a weekly column for The Telegraph, is a regular contributor to The Economist, Wired, Mashable and speaks regularly on the BBC World Service.


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About Monty

Monty Munford has more than 15 years' experience in mobile, digital media, web and journalism. He is the founder of Mob76, a company that helps tech companies raise money and exit. He speaks regularly at global media events with a focus on Africa, writes a weekly column for The Telegraph, is a regular contributor to The Economist, Wired, Mashable and speaks regularly on the BBC World Service.