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How China Turns A Blind Eye To Child Abuse

The most populous country in the world has no clear method for reporting or responding to abuse of its most vulnerable. Child welfare organizations fight to make a change.

Children in Haikou, Hunan Province
Children in Haikou, Hunan Province
Lan Fang

BEIJING — For years, 11-year-old Lily suffered cruel corporal punishment at the hands of her mother. She was also deprived of meals, an education and kind words. But after more than two months of work, the Children’s Hope Foundation finally obtained an agreement and signature from her mother to be allowed to help the child. It is one of the rare cases in China when, thanks to the intervention of press and police, a civic organization has been able to rescue a physically abused child.

Lily has a twin sister, who stayed with their mother from birth while Lily was sent to live with her grandparents until she was three years old. Being divorced and under great economic hardship, Lily’s mother became increasingly ill-tempered. Compared with her twin sister, Lily is said to be naughty and capricious, and very often angered her mother, who would punish her by leaving her standing at the doorway, sometimes for the whole day. Too often deprived of meals as she grew older, she had a tendency to run away. Every time the police brought Lily back, they tried preaching good sense to both mother and daughter, but the situation remained unchanged.

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Society

Taking A Position: A Call To Regulate Yoga In India

Trained practitioners warn that unregulated yoga can be detrimental to people's health. The government in India, where the ancient practice was invented, knows this very well — yet continues to postpone regulation.

Prime Minister Modi at a mass yoga demonstration in Lucknow, India

Banjot Kaur

NEW DELHI — Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the observance of the eighth International Yoga Day from Mysuru, in southwestern India, early on the morning of June 21. Together with his colleagues from the Bharatiya Janata Party, he set out to mark the occasion in various parts of the country — reviving an annual ritual that had to take a break for the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Yoga is one of the five kinds of alternative Indian medicine listed under India’s AYUSH efforts — standing for "Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha and naturopathy, and Homeopathy." Among them, only yoga is yet to be regulated under any Act of Parliament: All other practices are governed by the National Commission for Indian System of Medicine (NCISM), Act 2020.

Yoga and naturopathy are taught at the undergraduate level in 70 medical colleges across 14 Indian states. The Mangalore University in Karnataka first launched this course in 1989; today, these subjects are also taught at the postgraduate level.

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