Afternoon Voice

‘Childhood is a treasure, don’t let it get ruined’

Ahaan is a writer and a rapper belonging to a small town called Gopiganj, which is situated between Varanasi and Allahabad. Later, he moved to Delhi for better career options. During his struggling days, Ahaan made the song “EIGHT” out of his diary notes, which he used to write during his hostel days. In an interview with our Editor-in-Chief Vaidehi Taman, Ahaan shared his views about what all he had to suffer during his stay at hostel, what he felt and how bad an eight-year-old kid was being treated by his parents and hosteliers when looking out for a help.

What is your new video all about? Is it your own experience?

My video is about telling a behind the curtain story of Boarding schools and hostels where kids are sent by their parents for studies even when they are just too young to be parted away from parents; the video also shows how a parallel life runs in the hostel where juniors are bullied and beaten up by the seniors and even after that, there are no strict measures to ensure a child’s safety in boardings. Yes, this is my personal experience that I made into a song — what I went through, what I felt, and how I tried my best to get out of that.

Why there is no end to corporal punishments in India?

I think corporal punishments in India are not ending due to parents’ trust on the teachers, most of the parents just handover their kids to schools and usually don’t ask them back about the issues that a kid faces during his time in hostel. One more reason is the parents’ attitude that ‘a fearful kid will follow the rules’. Parents think that they can control their child’s behaviours by beating them up, so instead of listening what kid actually wants, they allow the teachers for corporal punishments and sometimes parents too perform this ritual.

Why are child abuse and ragging rampant even today in the Indian schools?

This question can be simply answered by asking a senior student who abuses their juniors and rag them just because they were also treated by their own seniors in a similar manner. Irony, but true, most of bullies were bullied themselves, it has also taken shape of somewhat ritual in hostel, I myself had the intentions to treat my juniors in the same way I was treated by my seniors, but my conscience stopped me.

 Why the Indian government fails to implement law or control abuse against children?

The biggest flaw which any government faces, be it Indian or abroad, can not totally put a full stop to child abuse, due to the fact that most of the time the abuser is from family itself, and if the saviour turns hunter, what can you do by sitting far away in the government offices.

What should be the social responsibility of every individual?

Social responsibility is a big word, and society starts from our own houses, if we can do justice at our home, first step is already taken towards social responsibility, as “Society starts from Home”.

What did you do to stop abuse?

After I got beaten up by my father in front of other hostel mates, I felt tragic, I had no hopes, I accepted the life I was forced to accept, after that I was bullied about two more years and then younger children were admitted to hostel who took my place as the main target of ragging.

 Other than little fame, how this song is going to help addressing this serious issue?

After watching my song even if a single parent starts communicating to their children and asks what he/she really feels about education and school that will be my biggest achievement. Every parent should make a habit to communicate with their children instead of giving them smartphones and games to keep them busy; it’s already destroying the childhood of kids.

Your message to our readers!

If you are a parent, look for the signs, the change in the behaviour of your kid, communicate with them, ask their problems, pamper them! Sometimes children don’t find words, feel shy and sometimes they even fear what would be parents reaction if they know about a particular accident took place with them. Hence, they chose to not tell the troubles they face that keeps haunting them. Childhood is a treasure which can’t be bought, don’t let it get ruined.