'Is your father from Taliban': How Muslim kids get bullied in school

Nazia Erum on bullying and stereotyping of Muslim children

How does a child react when he is subjected to questions like ‘Do your parents make bombs?’ ‘Is your father from Taliban, will he shoot us?’ on his school campus? In a secular school, where all kids wear the same uniform, eat the same kind of food and most probably come from similar economic backgrounds, why do some kids get asked these questions? And what kind of impact it leaves on them? Mother and author Nazia Erum takes us into this uncomfortable territory with her book, “Mothering a Muslim”.

Wary of the name-calling on prime-time TV shows, Erum decided to dig deeper into the living rooms of Muslim households. From there emerged heartbreaking stories of bullying. During her interaction with the mothers from the Muslim community she realized that the problem of bullying on communal lines has trickled down generations and magnified with time.

Nazia’s own memory of growing up in a quaint town of Assam was devoid of the communal debate that the country faced in the aftermath of Babri Masjid’s demolition. As a mother, Nazia’s only fear that her 3-year old will be bullied and stereotyped as the ‘other’.

In this video she reveals the shocking instances she came across during her interviews.

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