Friday, September 30, 2011

Are you abusing your child?be-aware-know the child rights

Are you abusing your child ,be- aware ?-know the child rights :
Many films in India aptly projected the position of children/teenagers in the society and abuse of their rights,the film "I'm Kalam" rightly projected child labour 'Chhotu' aspirations to become Sir A.P. J Abdul Kalam {Ex President of India and leading scientist of India}after watching him in T.V. He even changes his name as 'Kalam.'He befriends prince 's son,he was accused of theft of prince 's cloths,later prince 'son tells his father,it is not the case of theft, he himself handed over cloths to him ,the prince realizes his mistake,he sends him to same school ,where his son studies.The Stanley Ka Dabba" highlighted child labour ,it's story of boy ,apart from being intelligent student of English convent 's school ,he also works in hotel as labour,he impresses his teacher by penning down poem on her birthday,but he was abused by another male teacher for not getting his lunch box and scolds him for sharing lunch with his friends,finally ,the male teacher realizes his mistake ,leaves the school forever.
The disabled child also faces discrimination and stigma in the society and moreover, their rights were being abused by the society,The Hindi film "Koi Mil Gaya" revolves around the story of mentally challenged boy and teenager,Telugu film 'Anjali' deals with mentally challenged girl life.The "Taare Zameen par' deals about the child with dyslexia problem [learning disorder] 

The children /teenager tussle with their parents and constant intrusion of their individuality by over- bearing parents is another form of the abuse of child rights.The Telugu film Bommarillu [doll's house] deals about over-protective Father and sensitive son relationship,son develops bitterness towards his father for excessive interference[in all issues like dress,hair style,career or marriage] in his life,even at the age of 24,later father realizes his mistake.

Child and Law:In many countries children are not allowed to drive,vote, enter pub and there is prohibition of sale of Alcohol,cigarettes,adult movies or employment of child as labour[in India below 14 yrs].

The children don't have right to carry any business/trade or transfer the property,the minor's contract is void contract under Indian contract act ,they don't right to marry,until they attain the age of 18 years&even consensus sex or under- age sex is crime in the most countries.The age of consent is also matter of debate,in some countries,it is 14 or 16 or 18.The under -age sex or child sexual abuse or child pornography and child trafficking is considered as severe crime in most societies and severe punishment is imposed on perpetuaters.
Many countries ,the corporal punishment in schools is considered as crime and stringent punishment is prescribed in criminal laws.Many countries enacted special laws like Child Rights act to protect the child from abuse and their rights are well protected.India enacted law,making 'Right to Education' a fundamental rights in 2010,[Part-III of Constitution of India, 1950],there are many articles in the constitution which protects the child and their abuse.Many offenses relating child abuse are recognized by Indian Penal code ,1872.There are special laws in India and other countries like Juvenile justice act for juvenile delinquency and their rehabilitation. 

The Child &Over bearing Parents:
There is no universal accepted definition of child abuse and what constitute abuse is debatable issue in the world.What constitute authoritarianism or what constitute interference in young adults affairs?At the same time,the responsibility lies on parents to act cautiously or due care to protect the interest of children's welfare and well being.Any act of negligence towards to children& their rights is considered as crime in many societies.
Child &Reality TV Shows :
Many child rights activists complained about T.V Channels Reality shows and their excessive exhibition of competition among young children.Some of the them also criticized jury behavior and their comments on children performance affecting their psychology and self esteem.It has been observed that some of young child or teen suffered mental shock ,due to elimination in the reality shows.Many parents and child rights activists approached Child Rights Commission or Human Rights Commission to direct and stop reality shows.There are several allegations on parents are they are depriving child's education in the name of reality shows,games or sports for cheap publicity and exploitation of talent for commercial purpose.It is not a crime to nurture &develop the child talent ,but it should not be at the cost of basic and elementary education.

Many countries including India ,enacted law to enforce right to education to all children under age of 14 yrs,no child should be deprived of education for want fees.The denial of education and child labour is a statutory crime in many countries.
Some of the common form abuses of child,Teenager or young adults :

  • Are you excessively scolding your child for home work ;over-expectation beyond their abilities by insisting higher ranks or grades.
  • Are you comparing your kid or teen with other children and constantly belittling him or her ,not giving opportunity to learn according to his/her own speed or phase.
  • Are you stopping your child from watching T.V or depriving entertainment or games or recreation or holidays ?
  • Are you forcing teenager to study engineering or medicine by undermining his or her choice of subject?
  • Are you neglecting his /her health&nutrition?
  • Are you physically or mentally or psychologically harassing your child ?
  • Are you imposing your choice on him or her - clothes , food or career ,not respecting his or her individuality.
  • Are you denying child visitation rights of child [may be father or mother] in divorce cases.
  • Are you denying his /her friends company and interfering in the matter of friendship.
  • Are you denying the company of grand father/grandmother.
  • Are you respecting his/her opinions and view points or whether you are giving in -enough space to express his/her thoughts and opinion.
  • Are you denying any valuable information.
  • Are you expecting 100 % perfection from your child in all activities.
  • Are you forcing your kid to participate in various competitions like reality shows.
Then wait and ponder you are abusing your child ,you need to know the rights of child.
International accepted and known rights of Child
  1. The right to Education
  2. The right to Expression:
  3. The right to Information:
  4. The right to Nutrition
  5. The right to Health & Care
  6. The right to protection from Abuse:
  7. The right to protection from Exploitation:
  8. The right to protection from Neglect:
  9. The right to Development
  10. The right to Recreation:
  11. The right to Name & Nationality:
  12. The right to Survival
Convention on the Rights of the ChildThe Convention on the Rights of the Child is regarded as first legally binding international instrument to incorporate the full range of human rightscivil, cultural, economic, political and social rights.It was adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly resolution 44/25 of 20 November 1989;defines basic rights of children covering multiple needs and issues. India endorsed it on December 11, 1992.

Some of the operative part of the CRC
Article 1 Defines child as a person who is below the age of 18 years.
Article 2 Non-discrimination
Article 3 Best interest of the child
Article 4 Measures for implementation of rights
Article 5 Parents, family, community rights and responsibilities
Article 6 Right to life
Article 7 Right to name and nationality
Article 8 Preservation of identity
Article 9 Non-separation from parents
Article 10 Family reunification
Article 11 Illicit transfer and non-return of children abroad
Article 12 Expression of opinion
Article 13 Freedom of expression and information
Article 14 Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
Article 15 Freedom of association and peaceful assembly
Article 16 Privacy, honour, reputation
Article 17 Access to information and media
Article 18 Parental responsibility
Article 19 Abuse and neglect (while in family or in care)
Article 20 Protection of child who is deprived (temporarily or permanently)
of family environment
Article 21 Adoption
Article 22 Refugee children
Article 23 Disabled children
Article 24 Health care
Article 25 Periodic review of children in care
Article 26 Social security
Article 27 Standard of living
Article 28 Education
Article 29 Aims of education
Article 30 Children of minorities, indigenous children
Article 31 Play, recreation and participation in cultural life and the arts
Article 32 Economic exploitation
Article 33 Protection from narcotic and psychotropic substances abuse
Article 34 Sexual exploitation
Article 35 Abduction/sale/trafficking of children
Article 36 Other forms of exploitation
Article 37 Torture, capital punishment, deprivation of liberty
Article 38 Armed conflicts
Article 39 Recovery and reintegration (following abuse, torture, armed
conflicts etc.)
Article 40 Juvenile Justice
Article 41 Rights in other national or international instruments
The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights[NCPCR]:
The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) was set up in March 2007 under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005, an Act of Parliament (December 2005). The Commission's Mandate is to ensure that all Laws, Policies, Programmes, and Administrative Mechanisms are in consonance with the Child Rights perspective as enshrined in the Constitution of India and also the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.The Child is defined as a person in the 0 to 18 years age group.

Conclusion :

The denial of rights to children amounts to Human Rights Violations.Many countries have formed child rights panels and hotline/helpline to address the issue of child abuse at home or school or society in general.There is a need for zero-tolerance of child abuse at home as well as in society.The government needs to work towards ensuring child rights protection and let them live with dignity and respect.The onus lies on the parents and guardians to protect their interest and strive towards healthy upbringing in a decent environment by providing conducive atmosphere at home.
Courtesy &References :
  1. UNCHR
  2. NHRC
  3. NCPR

M Ravi Kumar 
Advocate&Former consultant to A.P Women's Commission[200-1-2002],Legal Researcher ,RTI activist and Blogger..  
He can be contacted :

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