Mysore/Mysuru: “We have embarked on a coordinated drive involving 24 departments to bring all levels of children to the mainstream of the society by ensuring all facilities and inculcating good culture among them,” said Chairman of Karnataka State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (KSCPCR) K. Naganna Gowda.
Addressing media persons at Vartha Bhavan in city recently, Naganna Gowda said that several recommendations and directions have been issued for the safety and protection of child rights after conducting progress review meetings at 31 districts in three months.
“Like environment and water, children are also resources of the country and we have to act without any bias. In this regard, the officers of respective departments should efficiently handle the responsibilities and implement the recommendations in coordination as requested through the Deputy Commissioner,” he said.
There are over three lakh children accommodated in various hostels run by the Department of Social Welfare, Backward Classes Welfare Department and Department of Youth Empowerment and Sports and Boys and Girls Home coming under Women and Child Welfare Department. They are provided all facilities including food and text books, but they have to be inculcated with culture. Even if a person grows to any heights in life, but lacks culture, it is of no use. Hence, the children should be imbibed culture in the interest of the society.
“We have to shed the culture of beating them and correct them. So, the taluk-level officers of Women and Child Development Department and Wardens should speak to the children,” Naganna Gowda underlined.
“I have inspected 30 hostels and Balamandiras during the State tour and even the district-level Officers have been visiting the hostels and supervising them. Still, the Wardens have to keep a tab on the children and advise them in case of any mistakes. If the children are found to be misconducting, the list of such kids should be readied and make arrangements for their counselling. The minimum level of learning and attendance should also be monitored along with creating awareness on child rights and a sense of responsibility towards becoming educated. It has been instructed to appoint counsellors to ensure there is no hurdle in bringing children to the mainstream of the society,” he added.
Vaccination drives should be conducted in adequate manner to protect pregnant women and the children at anganwadis and schools from hazardous diseases and also giving nutritious food to them. The survey of child labourers should also be effectively taken up and the amount of Rs 35,000 (Rs 20,000 from places where child labourers are rescued and Rs 15,000 assistance provided by the Government) should be deposited in the joint account of the child and Deputy Commissioner.
Special Juvenile Police Unit involving officers and women personnel to enquire child harassment cases should be constituted. Awareness on herbs should also be created among children. It has been also planned to provide skill development training, depending on their interest and also conduct bridge courses, Naganna Gowda said.
He suggested that awareness should be created against child marriage as every jail has 10 to 15 persons booked in Child Marriage cases. While the boys in such cases are sent to jail, the girls will be sent to Balamandira. The victims of child harassment can call Child Helpline- 1098, which will also connect to Police Control Room on 112 and the Police will rush to help.
“The activities related to child marriage, school dropouts and child labour cases are effectively conducted. The State unit of Child Welfare Committee (CWC) has been constituted and the district-level units will be constituted in a month. There is a need to keep an eye on school children and those who have quit studies midway, especially those infected with HIV and suffering from TB and other ailments. Those who lost their parent to COVID-19 and involved in begging on roads and child labourers should be extended various facilities,” Naganna Gowda added.
The KSCPCR Chairman said that a high-level meeting has been organised in Mysuru next week to discuss key issues.
Deputy Director of Women and Child Development Department Basavaraj and Deputy Director of the Department of Information and Public Relations D. Ashok Kumar were present.
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