While once common around the world, the use of physical pain as a means of discipline for children has become a very divisive practice. Such tactics, known as corporal punishment, are frowned on in many communities and countries, while others still use physical punishment in their homes and schools for both punishment and prevention of bad behavior. There are many definitions of what practices constitute corporal punishment. Generally, it is physical punishment that's intended to cause pain; it's used as retribution or discipline for an offense or as a deterrent against such acts. Essentially, it involves hitting someone, primarily a child, in response to bad behavior. At times the striker uses an object, such as a flat paddle, a belt or a stick.
What is corporal punishment? Why should it matter to us? Why is challenging corporal punishment very important. This document gives you in-depth understanding of these issues and also provides you guide to the legal provisions against corporal punishment in India.
Corporal punishment is best defined as the use of physical pain, injury, discomfort or humiliation to penalise unruly or criminal behaviour. It has been widely applied in the context of criminal justice throughout human history. Where liberal democracies now overwhelmingly favour custodial sentences as a response to criminality, sentences incorporating flogging, whipping, beating and disfigurement were much more common before the nineteenth century. Many non-western and non-liberal states retain corporal sentences.