Chennai: The Madras high court Madurai bench order to make Tirukkural compulsory in schools in Tamil Nadu from next academic year has evoked a mixed reaction.
Though police had been arresting juvenile offenders in various crimes, certain crimes – like killing of a school teacher inside the classroom by a student and murder of an octogenarian woman in her flat for jewellery by a teenager – get noticed widely. In the Nirbhaya gangrape and murder case in Delhi, a suspect was a minor.
When contacted, a member of Child Welfare Committee here said learning Tirukkural couplets could be a value addition in building next generation. “But just learning is not a guarantee that it would stop violence and crime by students,” the member said.
According to a psychologist, Tirukkural comes under the banner of moral education as it includes all psychological concepts. “Introducing it in schools will be beneficial to students. However, instead of a teacher teaching the students on the same, the school should assign a psychologist. A teacher tends to have zero per cent emotional interaction with children. Therefore, it is close to impossible that students will open up to their teacher.
However, students will trust a counsellor. Introducing Tirukkural should be done to help students mentally, instead of it being another subject where students can memorise the text and score good grades,” said B. Elayaraja, consultant counseling psychologist for 104 helpline.
“Introducing Tirukkural in all streams of education will enhance the child’s morality and conduct. However, it is the teacher’s duty to make teaching session interesting by associating real time incidents to those important tenets of life,” said Mohan Chander, principal, Rajkumar Sulochana Matriculation Higher Secondary School, Madipakkam.
A senior police officer, who had handled juvenile criminals, says understanding the meaning of the couplets and bringing them into daily life by a child could be a Herculean task. One can comprehend the entire Tirukkural only after certain age, particularly when they start facing real life problems. It also depends on how teachers teach the kids. Parents too sounded optimistic by the court order and said Tirukkural teaching was the need of the hour....