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An estimated 2-minute read

Flogging and Blogging - a Neo-Gandhian method to Peace

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Before debating if ‘whipping’ or ‘boxing someone in the ears’ is a Gandhian principle or punishment allowed under  law, let’s peek into (hope, I’m not committing a crime here) the history of corporal punishment.

The earliest recorded history of mankind coming under ‘caning’ was observed as early as in 10th Century BC: ‘Book of Proverbs attributed to Solomon’.

“He that spareth the rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him correcteth him betimes.
Withhold not correction from a child: for if thou strike him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and deliver his soul from hell”. (Source: Wikipedia).

There’s no respite to the rod since then. Man has regularly been lashed from Greece, Rome, Egypt, Medieval Europe, North America (all the way) to Asia. He’s progressed so much now as to receiving lashes for crimes as little as kissing in the public and drinking in private. Why this ‘Kolaveri’? (Kolaveri in Tamil if roughly translated means ‘Killer-instinct’)

Let’s listen to Anna Hazare, a neo-Gandhian and a civil society leader who is spearheading a movement in India against corruption and politicians.

“If he doesn’t reform (refrain from drinking) even after warned three times then he would have to go to the temple and take a vow that he would never touch alcohol. Even after he’s not correcting his ways then he would be tied to the electric pole outside the temple and beaten”. He said in an interview to a TV recently.

(But god! Why?)

“Like a mother goes (sic) through so much hardship for her child, and if the child makes mistakes then she even slaps the child. So like that someone makes a mistake then there’s nothing wrong in punishing him”.

Is that what he learnt from Satyagraha by Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of Nation and his mentor?

Gandhi said, “Satyagraha is a weapon of the strong. It admits NO violence under any circumstance whatsoever. Forgiveness is more manly (sic) than punishment”.

The 18th Century philosophers and legal reformers cried a halt to punishment saying, “The purpose of punishment should be reformation and not retribution”.  American Psychological Association opposes the use of corporal punishment altogether. Professor of philosophy Dr. David Banatar asks, “Why don’t detentions, imprisonments, fines and multitude of other punishments convey equally undesirable messages?”

The neo-Gandhian’s blog is no different. He’s recently gone on record asking “why only one slap?” referring to the incident when a person attacked the NCP (National Congress Party) leader Sharad Pawar. He meant there should have been a series of slaps from the public on the politicians in India, should there actually be any form of punishment meted out to them. What a load of rubbish!

He further advocates in his blogs that violence is acceptable for the betterment of society. Is it because people from across the country and worldwide give Anna and his team a huge reception? Why do social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Google carry on this propaganda of violence non-stop?

Shouldn’t there be an effective law enforcement mechanism in the country which ensures one's measured not by HOW MANY are following but HOW GOOD his/her conviction is.

Hope, I shall receive CLICKS and no slaps. :)

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