AUTHOR (extreme right) and guests hold copies of the book at the launching ceremony.—Dawn
AUTHOR (extreme right) and guests hold copies of the book at the launching ceremony.—Dawn

LARKANA: Corporal punishment meted out to children at different places in society leaves negative impact on their personality and proves detrimental to their smooth growth, causing depression, mental health issues, social insecurity and behavioral problems, says author of a book Corporal punishment and its effects on child’s personality.

Advocate Asiya Abbasi said at the launching ceremony of her book at Knowledge Centre here the other day that awareness about and strong legislation to ban corporal punishment at all places was the need of hour.

She said that it was actually her research thesis on corporal punishment to children and its consequences which she decided to bring out in book form given importance and sensitivity of the issue so as to sensitise common people to the harmful practice which damaged children’s personality beyond repair.

She said that corporal punishment did not mean physical punishment only but it included other kinds of punishments as well which tormented children or any other person for that matter and also inflicted pain upon them both physically and mentally.

She said that physical punishment in school was one of the major causes behind dropout as little children showed reluctance to go there because of fear and it led them to many negative activities like drug addiction, beggary and deviant behavior in life or child labour as well.

She said that parents and teachers should refrain from resorting to physical punishment and instead adopt alternative ways to discipline them. Government should, besides legislation, also launch a campaign against corporal punishment, she said.

Prof Dr Ahsan Danish said that majority of children in society were punished during their learning and growing age when they needed love instead of beatings. “It was a serious question one should raise whether in our society reward and punishment were always given to truly deserving?” he asked.

He appreciated the author and said that Ms Abbasi had done a brave deed by publishing her research thesis into a book otherwise many researchers hid their work for fear of attracting criticism because of originality, quality and utility of their work.

Prof Mukhtiar Samo, founder of Knowledge Centre, said the book was a source of awareness against corporal punishment that actually spoiled the child as against old maxim that “spare a rod and spoil a child”.

He said the author had amply mentioned provisions of national and international law and conventions for checking practice of corporal punishment to children at all places. The Sindh government had done good to pass the Sindh prohibition of corporal punishment bill into law in 2016 to prohibit corporal punishment in educational institutions.

He also appreciated the Gilgit-Baltistan assembly for imposing total ban on corporal punishment in educational institutions as well as at homes and workplaces.

Prof Jam Jamali said that the book carried the message “to replace the cutting tools with persuasive tools” at homes and schools for maintaining control, discipline and order.

Prof Sikander Abbasi said that the book helped reader to realise the importance of soft treatment for personality development of a child.

Deedar Ali Abbasi, Badaruddin Abbasi (the author’s father), advocate Abdul Rehman Bhutto, Prof Jahangir Abbasi and Sajjad Masan also spoke at the ceremony.

Published in Dawn, July 1st, 2019