DHAKA, - Chanchal is hardly a six- year-old lad. He reads in play group and stays with housemaid throughout the day.
His parents are service-holders. Occasionally, his life rotates round shopping malls with his parents. He is used to listen to rhymes, play games and watch videos in YouTube in the computer when his parents are out of their residence. He has an I-pad of his own.
Sometimes, he strikes ball fastening in a rope with a cricket bat at the verandah of their house while he imitates elders' activities on other times. The little Chanchal has been growing up like this manner within the brick and concrete surroundings of their city house.
Children are the buds of flowers and the leaders and torch-bearers of the nation in future. They are captive now within the four-walls constructed with bricks and stones, which is the main impediment for their normal growth and upbringings.
They are deprived of association of their friends of the same age-group. They are also deprived of love and affection, compassion, kindness, words of encouragement, advice as well as imposition of restrictions of their relatives, near and dear ones and elders.
On the contrary, these moral values are the sources of their inspiration, commitment, driving force, aim in life and light to their tough road and time. Not a single reason but a number of reasons are responsible for their deprivation from these moral values.
The reasons include complexities and competitiveness in educational system, scarcity of good educational institutions, dearth of trained and good teachers, competition in the admission process in good educational institutions, competition for good results in examinations, lack of child-flourishing labs, good environment, entertainment, required knowledge of guardians to flourish their kids giving them enough time and joined (unified) families.
Urbanisation, poverty, cruelty of elders and the society towards children, lack of sympathy and implication of children's right, their sense of insecurity, hard rule of their guardians and looseness in the child anti-repression law as well as easy availability of electronic goods for children and day-to-day occurrence of unwarranted and savage incidents in the society are also identified as the reasons behind their deprivation of good moral values.
The aforesaid reasons also compel a good numbers of scared and afraid guardians to keep captive their wards at homes. They usually become caged children at their homes after remaining in cages at their schools even after the end (break-up) of their day's study in classes at their schools.
They have to loiter between their houses and schools while house means a cage of rods and cement of a few hundred-square feet while the school is comparatively a big cage to them as if they are caged animals in captivity.
The captivity of children is more serious in the big towns than the small towns. The kissing high rise apartments are so constructed that could suit the joined families. The flat having a small but narrow verandah in which children gasp in captivity looking outside (towards the sky) touching the grills. Many of them even have no scope in this regard (to see the sky).
The public children's parks have long been turned into a haven of drug addicts and the parking place of three-wheeler rickshaws and push carts while the rates of tickets for private parks can naturally bewilder the guardians representing the low income group.
Though children could know about the names of traditional games like "Gollachhut", "Ekka-Dokka", "Lukochuri" and "Dariabandha" going through their text books, they don't know about the rules and procedures of these games. They are now trapped in a fairytale-colourful childhood as they have become accustomed with Face Book, television cartoons and animation films.
Digital binding is getting more priority than the mental binding to them. The technology is widening the gap (distance) between them and their parents. For this, nearly seven million (70 lakh) children, who have to carry backpacks of books on their shoulders at the tender age of four, are passing their days in captivity in the capital.
Some psychiatrists were of the opinion that the children are being isolated from the real world as they had to lead a life of home-interned kids. The technology-dependent computers, television sets and video games have become their all-time associates in which they are watching incidents of serious crimes like child-rape, murders of mothers by their wards, accidents and muggings.
These loathsome scenes have been creating a sense of panic (terror) in children's mind and are registering in their mind while they have gradually been becoming robots by losing their childhood with regular use of computer monitors. They held the view that children need scope for playing various games in adequate number of play grounds for their growth.
Prof Shubhagata Chowdhury of the city's BIRDEM Hospital said, "Life in captivity of children has been pushing them to a serious consequence (end). Presence of sugar in their blood has been increasing with rise in cholesterol while they have been suffering from diabetes. But, the tendency of such diseases could be prevented if the fast food culture, food habits and life style could be changed."
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)