Thursday, May 6

West Bengal: Pocso in school syllabus next year

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The state education department is going to introduce issues on child abuse in school textbooks from next year. In consultation with the West Bengal Commission for Protection of Child Rights (WBCPCR), it has been finalised that chapters on good touch and bad touch and Pocso would be included in textbooks for classes VI and VII, said Ananya Chakraborty, chairperson, WBCPCR.

“From January 2020, the syllabus committee will include a chapter on Pocso in the biology textbooks of class VI and VII. Not only will this introduce children to their rights from a young age, it will also sensitise parents,” said Chakraborty.

She said this on Thursday at Jadavpur University during a programme on protection of child rights. The event was organised by RACHSHA, a network of individuals and society organisations working against child sexual abuse, in association with Jadavpur University arts department.

“An incident was reported to us yesterday by Sarsuna Shelter Home about a girl child being sexually harassed by a male worker. The authorities told us that the girl should’ve informed them on the day it happened and not a week later. We were stunned. A woman facing domestic violence may speak up about it years later. So it’s natural for a little girl to speak up about the issue much later. The main problem is the ignorance and lack of awareness of the subject. If people who run shelter homes for children are unaware of the kind of atrocities children can face, then common citizens can’t be blamed,” She said.

The event — titled ‘Tumi Shunte Pachchho Ki?’ — had the organisation’s youth group conversing child safety through creative work including a short play and storytelling. A group of students also put up a percussion performance under the guidance of Pandit Tanmoy Bose followed by a panel discussion on child right and abuse.

 

Source: Times of India

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