A video surfaced on messaging service WhatsApp showing a woman tutoring a three-year-old in India. The tutor is believed to be a family member.
The child was being taught numbers and told to recite the them as the tutor pointed them out.
The child was visibly distressed, sobbing and begging the tutor to “teach with a bit of love”.
The tutor continues to put the child under pressure and she starts complaining of a sore head.
She repeats the numbers back to her tutor through clenched teeth, still sobbing.
The tutor becomes aggressive as the young girl stumbles over some of the numbers.
As the video ends, the tutor slaps the three-year-old across the face.
It took just hours for the video to spread, and caused outrage among WhatsApp users.
Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli condemned the cruelty in the video on Instagram.
“The fact that the pain and anger of the child is ignored and ones own ego to make the child learn is so massive that compassion has totally gone out of the window,” he wrote.
“This is shocking and saddening to another dimension. A child can never learn if intimidated. This is hurtful.”
Another cricketer, Shikhar Dhawan, said it was “one of the most disturbing videos”.
Others have slammed the tutor and said she is a “shameless woman” and the person who created the video was “cheap”.
The BBC revealed the toddler is the niece of Bollywood singer-composer Toshi Sabri.
Sabri defended the treatment of the child and told the Hindustan Times newspaper the video was for the family’s WhatsApp group.
“Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan don’t know about us. We know about our child better,” he said.
“Her nature is such that after being scolded, the next minute she runs off to play. But, because of her nature if we don’t push her, she won’t study.”
The young girl’s mother filmed the video to show other family members how stubborn the child had become.
“But she is very dear to us,” Sabri said.
Indian psychologist Achal Bhagat did not comment on the case specifically, but told the BBC that kind of treatment could harm a child permanently.
“It can result in the child developing a mistrust of people because those who are supposed to be loving her are mistreating her. It can either make her too cautious or too impulsive in forming relationships later in life. She can also start developing self-harm behaviour,” he said....Read more