TODAY -

Form village level committees to stop trafficking: MACR
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, August 07 2017: Even though most of the States of the country have set up village level child protection commitees to prevent trafficking, rape and murder, orphans from not being not enrolled in schools and child labour, the State Government has not taken up any step so far thus the future of the children still remain in the dark .

In an interview with The Sangai Express, Samurailatpam Bheigya Sharma of Manipur Alliance for Child Rights (MACR) said that the Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) was launched all over the country by the Central Government under the aegis of Ministry of Women and Child Development in 2009 to protect the children and prevent them from being trafficked and then lost, being raped and then murdered, young orphans from being directionless and without education and being employed as child labour .

He said that initiatives have already been undertaken under ICPS in all the States as village level child protection committees to look after the welfare of the children .

The ICPS programme reached Manipur in 2011 and 2012.The Ministry of Women and Child Development has already issued a directive to institute a village level child protection committee in all the 2379 villages in the State according to the 2011 census.

The committee should consist of a 15 members team as per the guidelines issued by the Ministry .

The team should include two children between 12 and 18 years of age, a teacher from the village to be selected by the inspector, an Anganwadi worker, one ANM, Community Wage Organisation, NGO, two members from Self-help Group for Women, one dignitary of the village, one elected representative of the village, one pradhan of the local panchayat, one parent from the school management committee, one Anganwadi supervisor and one person belonging to the SC or ST Community.

The guideline also mentions that there should be at least five women in the team, he elaborated .

Even though all the villages of rest of the country have already formed the committees, the Social Welfare Department has not taken any feasible step so far.

The MACR has even submitted a paper to the Department asking it to form such committees.

But the Government has no plans to do so.

Therefore, MACR has started constituting village level child protection committee in 33 villages since 2014, he said .

The committee has rescued 73 children from seven villages of Senapati district from hazardous circumstances.

The village level committees formed by the MACR goes abot in these 33 villages to discuss and prevent the children from being trafficked, raped, etc.

There has been no crime reported from this village since the committees were formed, he continued .

He observed that there will be no reduction in child trafficking until these committees are formed by the Government and people have been hearing about instances of trafficking everyday .

Fast track and POCSO courts will not suffice.

Discussion with the committee members and the people of the village is the only way to curb crime against children.

One of the biggest difficulties faced by the child protection workers is the lack of funding by international donors.

The United Nations International Child Education Fund has no reach here.

The children here are really unfortunate, he lamented.


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