NCPCR Advocates Cultural Freedom for Students on Raksha Bandhan

New Delhi, August 31, 2023 – In a resounding commitment to preserving cultural heritage and safeguarding the rights of children, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has issued a groundbreaking directive urging schools nationwide to refrain from penalizing students who choose to wear rakhi, tilak, or mehendi during the festival of Raksha Bandhan. The application of this directive is a pivotal step toward nurturing a more inclusive and accepting educational environment.

Priyank Kanoongo, Chairperson of the National Commission for Protection Of Child Rights, explained that the NCPCR, established under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005, is vested with the responsibility to safeguard children’s rights and address relevant matters across the country.

This encompasses monitoring the effective implementation of crucial acts, including the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012; Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015; and the Right to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009.

Over time, the NCPCR has observed through various media reports that children often endure harassment and discrimination from school staff during cultural celebrations. Instances have been noted where schools forbid students from wearing rakhi, tilak, or mehendi, leading to both physical and mental distress. It’s worth noting that corporal punishment is explicitly prohibited in schools under Section 17 of the RTE Act, 2009.

In light of these observations, the NCPCR fervently calls upon concerned authorities to ensure that schools discontinue any practices that might expose children to corporal punishment or discriminatory treatment. This directive aims to create a nurturing environment where cultural celebrations are embraced and where students can express their traditions without fear of repercussions.

This monumental step not only celebrates the rich tapestry of Indian culture but also underscores the importance of children’s emotional well-being and their right to express their cultural identities. By advocating for inclusivity and cultural freedom, the NCPCR is championing an educational ecosystem that empowers and respects young minds.

Parents, educators, and child rights activists across the nation have welcomed this directive as a progressive stride towards ensuring a more harmonious and culturally aware educational experience. As Raksha Bandhan approaches, this directive stands as a beacon of positive change, reminding educational institutions of their responsibility to foster an environment that nurtures both academic growth and cultural heritage.

For detailed information and further guidelines, parents and educational institutions are encouraged to refer to the official communication provided by the NCPCR on their website.


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