Canes and Tears

One of my senior colleagues came in late to office today morning.She looked terribly tensed and exhausted that even sitting inside the air conditioner made her sweat profusely.

I felt that even her eyes were little moist and she kept wiping her nose with the a soiled tissue.

Over the coffee,she explained me the problem causing her trouble.

She was late to office as she had to visit her only son’s school.

Her son was making too much trouble telling her that he won’t go to school at all.Today when she enquired at the school,it was known that her son was punished by a teacher three days back and poor kid got scared to go to school again.She was angry about the punishment system and the way teachers mentally tortured the kids at young age.

It is human nature that when we hear somebody else who is in more pain than us,we will feel much better.Thus I started off telling her my scary school days.

I studied in a CBSE school at Tirur,Kerala.(I don’t want to disclose the name of the school).I was there from my LKG till 4th std.Those days I used to study well only because I was scared to think about the punishment by canes.Below are some of the innovations done by my school teachers to torture us badly.

  • They tie thick rubber bands at the end of the canes.Then they tie two canes together with a thicker rubber band and then beat us.
  • They oil the cane and then wind a cloth at the end where they hold it so that cane don’t slip from their hands.
  • They use wooden ruler to beat us on a tightly held wrist; between the bones.
  • They make us stand at a hand distance and whirl the cane so that the tip of the cane touches our body.
  • It was a common scene to see dark red and violet patches on hands,wrists,shoulders,knee and even thighs of the kids.

The scariest punishment which I ever saw in my life happened to my dearest friend Shameena.(This is her real name.I have been searching for her for a long time.If at all she happens to read this,then I may get back my friend.)

Shameena was a tiny soul who was scared of everything and everyone.Her father was a doctor and her family expected her to study well.But I don’t know why,she was not able to study anything.She was always the last one in our rank list and teachers hated to see her face.During interval,she weeps hugging me but even I never knew how to help her out.It happened in our 3rd std.One day during Math class,she was asked to solve a problem on the board.As usual she couldn’t even make out how to start off.She stood there blinking for a while.The teacher got furious and made her bend down and stand.He beat her on her buttocks and legs like farmers do so on bulls.That day Math was a double period session so she had to stand that way for nearly two hours.The teacher would give us problem to solve and then will ask her to explain the method.Poor girl she couldn’t even utter a word and that made him more angry and he will beat her again with the cane.By the time it was interval,there was a pool of tears where she was standing.Her legs had become numb that we girls had to lift her back to the seat.I remember pouring water on her face and the water getting mixed with her tears and making a patch on my white shirt and navy blue tie.That was the last time I saw her.Next day she didn’t come to class.The class teacher announced that she left the school and our class will be having 100% pass.She seemed to be very excited and relived.

I looked at my colleague’s face and tears were rolling from her eyes uncontrollably.

I told her that it was such terrible childhood experiences that made me bold and adamant and assertive.All our school kids were matured like 10th std kids when we were just 10.

After 4th std,I left that city and I was relieved from those nightmares which made me cry in the midnight.

PS : I have visited that city only once after leaving from there forever.But even then I never went to see my school.Still my heart sinks upon hearing the school’s name and those teachers which we never liked in childhood.