Condoms, Contraceptives, Knife Found In Bengaluru Schoolchildren's Bags

School authorities feel sex education as a subject in the curriculum is urgently needed.

The pandemic has worsened the crisis, a medical expert told NDTV.

Bengaluru:

Condoms, contraceptives and a knife were among some of the things found during a recent search of students' bags by a group of schools in Bengaluru, leaving authorities stumped and parents worried.

"This is the first time we found condoms. Parents too said they have found condoms in their house as well. It might be a knife, chain, it might be substance, cigarettes and lighters, and now we have condoms too," the principal of one of the schools told NDTV. The search was carried out by member schools of the Associated Management of Primary and Secondary Schools, Karnataka.

The school authorities feel sex education as a subject in the curriculum is urgently needed.

"The curriculum is not designed properly. We request the government to do it as soon as possible and incorporate sex education into the curriculum. We must educate them and show them the right path. Otherwise, it will lead to a disaster in the future," one principal said.

Parents are worried. "The uncensored, bolder streaming platforms and cinema available freely at home, bad friendship is to blame. Parents are using these things to keep children occupied due to their busy lives. Only a proper probe on a case-by-case basis can reveal the cause," said a parent.

"To tighten the reins and keep tabs on children's activities, friendship, schedules and keeping a closer watch on children is the need of the hour," she said.

Dr Chitra Shankar, a consultant at Manipal Hospital who studies the behavioural patterns of children and teenagers, said the pandemic - which cleared the path for unfettered access to technology for many children - has worsened the crisis.

She agreed with the schools that it was time for the Karnataka government to introduce sex education in their curriculum.

"We would have continued to be ignorant if this hadn't come out. And students would remain ignorant of healthy practises like exercises, music academic achievements. They would be indulging in unhealthy behaviours. They would be included towards risky behaviours with different substances, alcohol," she said.

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