Govt Gives Strict Warning to Schools in Tamil Nadu After Caste Wrist Bands for Students Spark Furore
In the Tamil film ‘Raatchasi’, there is a scene where, Jyothika, the lead actor who plays the role of a head mistress in a government school, cuts off bands tied around student’s hands that were meant to divide them on the basis of their caste. In the scene, the teachers are shown to be mere spectators, who refuse to intervene because according to them, the bands signified the students’ identity.
A classic case of reel to real is unfolding in Tamil Nadu, with the Directorate of School Education busy cracking down on schools where children were made to wear wrist bands of various colours to segregate them on the basis of their caste.
The governing body has directed senior officials to identify such schools and take action against those responsible for the discrimination. The Department has also asked for a report from all districts on what action has been taken in this regard.
“It is informed that the officer trainees of IAS 2018 batch lodged a representation to the Government where it has been stated that in some schools in Tamil Nadu, the students were made to wear colour coded wrist bands,” the circular dated July 21 2019 stated.
These wristbands, which come in shades of red, yellow, green and saffron indicate whether they belong to a “lower class” or “upper class”. In addition to this, rings and forehead “Tilaka” on the head were also used as caste marker.