top of page

Chief Justice Recounts Childhood Caning Experience and its impact

NEW DELHI: While corporal punishment is now widely condemned as a harmful method of disciplining children, it was once a common practice in education systems of past generations. Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud reflected on his own experience with corporal punishment during a workshop on Saturday.

Recalling a poignant memory from his childhood, Chandrachud shared how he was caned at school for a minor mistake. "How adults treat children has a profound impact on their minds throughout their lives... I will never forget that day in school," he remarked. Despite not being a troublemaker, Chandrachud found himself on the receiving end of punishment for forgetting the appropriate needles for a class project in fifth grade.

He candidly revealed that he had asked his teacher to cane his buttocks instead of his hand, out of embarrassment. Unable to confide in his parents, Chandrachud endured ten days of hiding his injured hand.

"The physical injury healed, but left a lasting imprint on the mind and spirit. It still accompanies me when I discharge my duties. The impact of such trauma on children is profound," expressed the Chief Justice.

Chandrachud shared this personal anecdote while addressing the National Dialogue on Juvenile Justice organized by the High Court of Nepal in Kathmandu. He emphasized the need for justice systems to respond to young people involved in legal disputes with compassion, rehabilitation, and opportunities for reintegration into society.

Discussing the complexities of adolescence and its intersection with various societal factors, Chandrachud underscored the importance of understanding the vulnerabilities and needs of juveniles entangled in legal matters.

Furthermore, he addressed challenges faced by India's juvenile justice system, including inadequate infrastructure and resources, particularly in rural areas. Chandrachud highlighted the issue of overcrowded and substandard juvenile detention centers, hindering efforts to provide legal support and rehabilitation to young offenders.

He also acknowledged the vulnerability of youth to criminal exploitation, citing examples of gangs exploiting disabled children for begging in India.


bottom of page