Children show the way to peace
January 1, 2015
In Raipur, 35 children participated in the drawing competition from two different schools on December 27 and 31 respectively on the theme ‘Peace & Inter-Religious Harmony’. This event was organised by ‘Aadijan Peace Centre’, Raipur in association with women’s right groups. The event began with a discussion with the students and teachers on the how could we bring peace in society in the context of conflict in the name of religion.
Students from both the schools took active part in these events as well as discussion. Varnita, a woman right activist said that it is important for us to raise these questions and think of a peaceful society. Saraswati, the teacher in one of the schools brought in the perspective of respect for all religions. She said the respect for different religions is becoming slim and people are turning more intolerant at the moment.
Peace is only possible when we are open and understanding towards each other, Prabha a class nine student expressed. Another student who had come without a pencil said that her father rides a rickshaw to earn some money while her mother works as a domestic help. Khusbu says, I am poor what is peace for me. Such children bring in the real thrust and quest for peace in Indian context.
Fathima another teacher says that these children come to school with a lot of problems. It is difficult to teach them. They are not able to follow the lessons we teach since there is none at home to follow it with them. Durga one of the activist witnesses of the competition commented that the smaller children bring in more secular and plural ideas. She pointed, the bigger the student, the chances of getting corrupt is higher.
In Chhattisgarh during the past six months many churches were attacked and vandalised, people were beaten badly, women tortured and fake ceremonies of ghar-wapsi is being organised. In nearly 50 panchayats in Bastar region the many fundamentalist groups mobilised the panchayat leaders and forced the gram sabha to pass a resolution that only Hindu religious activities would be allowed in that particular panchayat. There has been immense pressure mounting on the people to leave their faith.
The idea of freedom upheld in the Constitution is out of space and all sources of livelihood and right to choice is consistently violated. This is particularly a reality in the context of Chhattisgarh. It is in this context that the painting by the school students attains to establish peace amidst the budding minds. They sketched out their hearts and minds without any biased. No one could stop these children.