Beating children criminalized: IHC order on Shehzad Roy’s plea

The Islamabad High Court heard the petition and Justice Athar Minallah imposed an interim ban on the use of corporal punishment on children. A commendable step that will pave the way to end violence against the children in society.

Shehzad Roy

Islamabad High Court has temporarily suspended the corporal punishment for children under 12 on the petition filed by Shehzad Roy, the singer, and social rights activist.

He filed the petition on behalf of his organization, ‘Zindagi Trust‘ seeking a ban on the provision of corporal punishment in the Pakistan Penal Code. As per the reports, PPC allows guardians, parents, and teachers to use corporal punishment on children in good faith for the benefit.

 

The Islamabad High Court heard the petition and Justice Athar Minallah imposed an interim ban on the use of corporal punishment on children. However, section 89 of the Pakistan Penal Code will remain suspended in Islamabad only.

In its written order, the court noted that “corporal punishments are not in consonance with the constitutionally guaranteed right of inviolability of dignity notwithstanding section 89 of the Pakistan Penal Code, 1860.”

“Last year, a child passed away because of the use of corporal punishment in a school in Lahore,” said Roy’s lawyer in the court. His lawyer added that Shehzad Roy has established an organization for the reforms in the education sector of Pakistan.

While Shehzad Roy cited a heartwrenching incident of a teenage student who died after brutal assault from a school teacher, recently a painful video of a father inflicting a gruesome beating to her daughter, dragging her on the stairs with her hairs, went viral on social media. The video showed father spared no mercy to the daughter despite her painful imploration.

The court has also directed the Ministry of Human Rights to provide the court with a report on “status of the compliance with the obligations of the State of Pakistan under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child concerning the prohibition of corporal punishment”. While Justice Athar Minallah also recalled that a few bills have been passed on the issue.

 

Islamabad High Court also summoned Private Education Institutions Regulatory Authority to issued guidelines to private schools the court decision.

“When a child is born, parents hit him, when he goes to school, teachers hit him, when he grows older and goes out in the society, Police hits him to make him a better person. Contrarily, research shows that the use of violence only increases violence,” said Shehzad Roy while talking to media outside the IHC.

Read more: Shehzad Roy happy to represent Pakistan at UN convention in Austria

Shehzad Roy took to Twitter and hailed the decision of Islamabad High Court against corporal punishment yesterday.

Roy, in his plea, sought the ban on corporal punishment arguing that in most cases, it takes on the form of a barbaric physical assault on children in schools endangering their safety and life.

 

The decision of IHC is welcomed and efforts of Shehzad Roy are praised on social media for ensuring a safe environment for children.

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