Are India's Anti-Bullying Laws Doing any Good?
Are India's Anti - Bullying Laws Doing any Good? Bullying does not necessarily mean hitting or causing physical harm to someone but it also is something that is done on purpose and leads to mental stress or trauma. Teachers can play an important role in reducing the level of bullying that takes place in schools and colleges.
Bullying at Workplace and Anti-Bullying Norms for Employees
For a person who's been through a bullying experience, it's not easy to get over that experience and move on. Bullying or harassment affects the performance at workplace, as well as the health of the employees. In India, there is no special legislation against bullying at workplace. However, a worker can seek redressal under different provisions provided under the constitution of India, IPC and C.P.C. The Indian Constitution, through various articles like 39, 39-A, 43-A, 21, etc., has tried providing an idea of the ideal environment that should be provided to the employees by the employers. The article 23 prevents any form of forced labour, while article 24 prevents employment of children below the age of 14 years at hazardous places. It's time we actually implemented these laws effectively, on every level of organizations.
Bullying in Schools and Colleges
Bullying also exists at school level in India, especially in boarding schools. In 2015, the HRD ministry directed CBSE schools to form anti - ragging committees at school level, and also made sure that severe punishments were given to those who were held responsible of indulging into bullying by any means. Bullying needs to stop at the root level. Itâs been noticed that students who indulge into bullying were themselves bullied at a younger age. Bullying has an impact on the physical health, but it also leaves a scar on the mental health of the person getting bullied. Different people go through different consequences of bullying. While some fall into the trap of depression, anxiety, and other such serious mental health issues, some end up becoming bullies. This forms a vicious cycle, which never really comes to an end.
UGC has laid guidelines for all the colleges across the country to make sure that they follow anti-ragging rules in their respective universities. The government of India enacted special regulation to restrain bullying at higher education institutions. The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) directed all its affiliated schools to form an anti - bullying committee. CBSE has also recommended strict action against anyone found bullying anyone. However, the question remains, are these laws enough to put an end to the bullying that happens on a daily basis in our country?
Parents' and Teachers' Roles
There is usually a behavioural pattern noticed amongst bullies. Bullies tend to have sudden unexplained break - downs, broken relationships, ineffective communication, etc. Parents, teachers, counsellors, and mentors need to acknowledge these patterns and try to help them as early as possible. Educators must make it a point that no student is allowed to indulge into any such activities which could be categorized under bullying. It should also be ensured that equal opportunities and care is given to all the students. Contribution by teachers can significantly improve the current situation in India. Parents also play a very important role in helping out their kids if they are being bullied.
- Parents need to have an empathetic attitude towards children and ensure that they receive the counselling support they require.
- Parents should focus on building stronger communication with children. This will provide them with a more comfortable environment and they will be able to express their grief. Most children find it challenging to speak up if they are being bullied.
- It is important to believe your child when they tell you about bullying or any kind of harassment.
According to a study, bullying was reported by 31% of school children between the ages of 8 and 12 years in rural India. Bullying has now become a much deeper problem and needs more attention from us. Be it the rural parts or the urban parts of India, we need to look out for signs of bullying, to save those who might be victims of bullying and also those who might be on the verge of becoming bullies.