Teacher slaps child 40 times in 3 minutes for not answering attendance call

In many parts of the world, using physical force against a child - especially in a classroom - is illegal. Corporal punishment, as it is most commonly referred to, is banned in the UK and highly frowned-upon in the USA. In other parts of the world, however, the laws towards these types of discipline are slightly more lax.

This is the case in India, where using violence towards unruly or badly-behaved children is still common practice.

Distressing footage emerged yesterday from the St. John Vianney School in Lucknow. The video, which is only three minutes long, shows a teacher striking a boy 40 times across the face after he allegedly failed to respond in attendance. During the assault, the teacher - named as Retika V John - also snatched a sheet of paper from the young student, and pulled him across the room by his tie.

The CCTV images show the incident taking place in a classroom with approximately 40 children present. Most of them can be seen watching the incident take place, but others have their heads down, or are looking away as if an event like this is a common occurrence.

The footage, which has now been viewed over 1.7 million times on Facebook, has attracted mixed responses from people all over the world. The top comment on the Facebook post comes from Sonia Haseeb Qazi, who wrote:

"She should be slapped in the same way 40 times in a minute.. The little kid will live the rest of his life with this trauma... She killed his confidence & instilled fear in him... Shame on her for ruining his personality..."

Boy slapped across face by teacher Credit: Facebook

Other people were not so sympathetic towards the boy, however. Another Facebook user, Abismrita Sharma, apparently agrees with the John's actions. She commented:

"Now a days kids are pampered like hell..hence suicide cases in teens are very common now a days..they gets hurt easily..they gets emotional easily and they kills themselves easily..because if they don't get what they want they become rebellious..I don't blame the teacher."

Regardless of the split opinions, corporal punishment is an undeniable problem in India. A recent study of over 3,000 Indian students aged 5-18 found that 65% of them reported having been beaten by teachers at school. One student in the investigation stated that:

“If we don’t study, they beat us. If we ask other children for help, they beat [us]. I went to drink water without asking sir, so he beat me that time. They said all children should come back to class by the time they count 10 after the interval. But I went home [to use the toilet]. After coming back to school, he beat me.”

The study also found that those most likely to be physically disciplined were younger, and often came from poorer backgrounds. In this particular instance, the boy was in class three - meaning he is only eight or nine years old.

Boy slapped across the face by teacher Credit: Facebook

According to the victim's parents, the young student's face was swollen when he came home after school that evening, and his demeanour was noticeably different than normal. Concerned about what may have happened, they approached the school for information. The principal then checked the classroom footage and discovered the horrific attack that had taken place.

The teacher has since been fired by the school and booked by police after the child's father officially reported the incident.