Child Rights

In 1989 world leaders felt the need for special rights for children under 18, after discovering that the Human Rights do not protect children fully. They signed the Convention on the Rights of the Child and Bhutan was among the first countries to recognize and agree to it.

The Convention …spells out the basic human rights that children everywhere have: the right to survival; to develop to the fullest; to protection from harmful influences, abuse and exploitation; and to participate fully in family, cultural and social life.

The four core principles of the Convention are non-discrimination; devotion to the best interests of the child; the right to life, survival and development; and respect for the views of the child. Every right spelled out in the Convention is inherent to the human dignity and harmonious development of every child. The Convention protects children›s rights by setting standards in health care; education; and legal, civil and social services. (UNICEF)

Built on varied legal systems and cultural traditions, the Convention is a universally agreed set of non-negotiable standards and obligations to be respected by every country signatory to it.

Quite strangely I went to school in 1989. Every person of my age would have same hostile memories from schools but because I was very naughty myself I don’t have any good thing to say about my primary school. I was beaten by teachers and seniors almost every day. Nobody seemed to mind and therefore I didn’t mind either. I thought I deserved the hammering on the head and being whipped naked in the public. But much later I realized that not many thought they deserved it, because by the time I reached high school only a few of us where still holding on to school, the rest had dropped out on the way.


Teachers and parents are the people who should be educated on the rights of the child, but how many of them even know there is such a thing? I actually saw the articles in CRC only a few months back, thanks to the ‘Educating for GNH’ workshop in my school. Perhaps this ignorance is still widespread among our teaching fraternity which is why even in 2013 children are scared of teachers.

I pledge to myself that I will respect the CRC at all cost without negotiation and serve my duty as care giver and protector of children who are put in my hand. I will work toward protecting the Rights of the Child which we were supposed to do since 1989.

Passang Passu Tshering

The writer is a teacher with the Bajothang Higher Secondary School in Wangdiphodrang

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  1. it sad to see that the government is least bothered about the child rights in Bhutan. I just want to give one example.
    children born to either of a Bhutanese parent and one of the parent whose census has problem due to 1990s issues are denied all rights. In fact the parents are denied court marriage by our Bhutanese court, which means the child does not have census and is basically stateless.
    I just want to ask government whether they have really thought of this issue. and also thought of counting how many children are in this category “Stateless”
    UNICEF in Bhutan is doing nothing to protect these children. These children are denied all rights. It would be shame full to state here that all the rights they publish in their site and document which they (UNICEF) are suppose to hold is not happening at least in Bhutan.

  2. The Bhutanese Government is a hypocrite, its in the pas and it is now. They are afraid to educate public about their rights, because they fear public demanding more rights and government unable to protect it for some corrupt reasons.  

  3. Sometimes people sit on the fence and make very big claims. I think the government is doing a good job in ensuring basic rights to every child. the child protection bill has been enacted and implemented. i think that is fair enough. We are far ahead of many countries in the region such as Nepal, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, in terms of child rights legislation and assurance and we should be happy. With regard to awareness and education about  these, i would say, ‘Yes we need”.

  4. Sir/Madam,
    My name is Jamtso, father of Gyedrone Pema Jamtso. On Friday 22nd Mar 2019, my daughter came with bruises all over her calf. When asked, she (my daughter) said she was beaten up. Now, I accept the fact that maybe and maybe my daughter was misbehaving in the class. Still, I am sure there are plenty solutions rather then physically abusing students. This is so much alike ‘Capital Punishment’! She is just eight years old studying in third grade, Zilukha Jr High School.

    I would have appreciated if the English teacher have pre informed parents before taking matters into their hands! Is beating a last resort ? If so, I would like to know who authorized it ? Is it only English teacher allowed to do whatever she wants cause I have never seen one teacher as inhuman as her.

    Please advise!
    P.S; This is just a father seeking for justice.


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