Have you ever been called by different names in a sarcastic way like a nerd, a bookworm, or been criticised for the way you talk or behave, or for your ethnicity or race or colour, complexion, or religion by other people or a person? Do you face verbal abuse or physical assault and other such things? If you said yes to any of the above situations then you are being bullied and that’s not okay.
To be honest I first thought that this happened to only me but when I did my research on bullying I was shocked to know the percentages of people getting bullied. I would have never believed what students in Kashmir go through had I not been the victim of the same. But as they say just because certain things haven’t happened to you doesn’t mean they don’t exist!
The aftermath of being a victim of bullying ranges from low academic scores to issues like mental breakdown, stress or even personality disorders in later part of our lives according to many reports. And to mention the worst can lead the victim taking his or her own life, the Suicide.
Although anyone can be the victim of bullying but these groups have been found to be more susceptible to such bullying and abusive behaviours for example:-
- A person with a different religious background or a health condition or a disability.
- Students who receive extra attention from teachers because of their hard work.
3. Introverts and socially shy people.
4. Students who have come to a new school and are quiet and peaceful.
With the of the rise of the social media and its popularity especially among the teens and youth in Kashmir in particular and the entire globe in general now another issue of “cyberbullying” has become the cause of concern to the modern world, where the victim is targeted online and bullied even using fake Ids.
I have personally seen a lot of hoardings and posters talking about the anti ragging and anti bullying issues inside or outside the college, universities and schools premises in Kashmir but does it show its effect on the ground is the main question?
According to my experience I can say why some of us don’t report, maybe the fear of being judged or being misunderstood or not being trusted upon. If you as students ever found another student getting bullied or mentioning to you that he or she has been bullied please look into the matter asap following a proper investigation.
I would like to say to the person who is getting bullied, you have to stand up for yourself first, only then expect others to stand up for you. Sometimes your bully can be the person you never would have thought otherwise like a teacher, a senior, or a relative. Under such circumstances stay strong & never let a bully suppress your freedom of thought & action.
Personally if I find anyone getting bullied I stand up for them because I have been in their shoes and let me tell you it’s a very bad feeling getting bullied.
According to a report of UNESCO which was published on 22nd of January 2019 almost one in three students (32%) had been bullied by their peers at school at least once in that month & physical bullying is the most common form of bullying. Sexual bullying is the second most common in many regions. The physical appearance is the most Common cause of bullying followed by race nationality or color according to the reports of the students.
The negative effects on the mental health, quality of life, character & achievements of the students who had been bullied in the past. Some solutions like safe and positive school climate and classroom environment and active participation of all students concerned can help reduce bullying.
According to one more report of the global citizen organization of January 23 2019 one in three kids have had already had been bullied in school that month United Nations report.
Half of the world’s teens experience peer violence in and around schools. The UN released a report as part of its ‘Safe to Learn’ campaign to encourage the world to step up and make schools safer. UNICEF POLL also reported on 4th September 2019 One in three young people in 30 countries including India have been the victims of bullying.
I wish to live up to the day when bullying won’t be an issue anymore and all students in spite of their differences can thrive with equal opportunities freedom and happiness.
It’s my humble and sincere request to the responsible section of society including parents and teachers; please notice such things on time, you don’t know what goes behind your back in student’s life.Ask them about their issues like what worries them on a daily basis. Become their friends and if they open up to you please take an educated calculated step to help them out.
Let us collectively appreciate all those who are acting against bullying globally like many organisations and entertainment industries & platforms like Netflix that are creating content which is spreading awareness about bullying. But there is a lot more to do on the ground levels & lets encourage people who are dedicated toward this cause.
Let us together stop this climate of fear among the students who are being bullied, and thus we can create an environment full of love and support.
Let me end by saying this to all the bullies out there from all victims of bullying in the entire world: “ If you can breathe freely and be happy why can’t I for both you and me are the children of Eve and Adam”.
Could I live to see that!
Burhan Ul Haq is a Masters Student, Biotechnology.