Focus on creating awareness about laws
Number of children begging put at 350
VISAKHAPATNAM: The Child Welfare Committee at its meeting here on Monday decided to initiate a drive to prevent begging in the city using children. The meeting decided to create awareness on the stringent provisions.
Chairman Kutikuppala Surya Rao said use of children for begging at traffic intersections and putting them under influence of narcotics or other intoxicants attracted imprisonment up to three years and fine. He said a preliminary assessment put the number of such children at 350 and it was suspected that a racket in supplying children for begging was going on. He said a survey would be conducted on the conditions and also the resources the 10 homes in the city had to rehabilitate such children before taking up a drive at all traffic junctions on a single day to round up all such persons using children.
Additional Deputy Commissioner P. Rama Rao said police also needed awareness on dealing with cases of abandoned children. He assured all cooperation in preventing the use of children for begging.
CWC comes under the Department of Juvenile Welfare, Correctional Services and Welfare of Street Children of the state government. Members T. Saraswathi Devi, M. Shamsuddin, S.T. Ramani and ILN Prasad and project director of Women and Child Welfare A.E. Roberts participated.
According to assistant project officer of Women and Child Welfare Y. Sunanda, of the 17 children at its home, three were given in adoption and for four approval was awaited from authorities in Hyderabad, two were facing health problems, four were declared as abandoned children and for three a notice for adoption was given.