Other States

‘Odisha lacks sincerity in monitoring child care homes’

No screening mechanism for hostels, no data on how many residential hostels are there: NCPCR

The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) on Thursday lashed out at the Odisha government for not making sincere efforts to monitor child care institutions.

“The State government is not at all sincere about monitoring CCIs. They do not have any screening mechanism for hostels where children are put up. Ironically, they do not have information as to how many residential hostels for children are operating in the State,” said Yashwant Jain, member of NCPCR, who was in the State to inspect different CCIs.

In the wake of recent allegations of sexual harassment of children in a shelter home in Dhenkanal district, the NCPCR teams are scrutinising registration of CCIs and facilities available in those care homes.

Nine teams comprising of members of NCPCR and the Odisha State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, District Child Protection Officers and other State government officials will make surprise visit to 56 CCIs in 19 districts. The objective is to get a sense of ground situation so that child abuse could be prevented. Besides, teams would scrutinise if children are provided basic amenities as per the NCPCR guidelines and the Juvenile Justice Act.

“Several organisations have come up with hostel accommodations for children to evade stringent monitoring under the Juvenile Justice Act. The State government neither follows the NCPCR guidelines nor has developed its own mechanism to keep a tab on the residential hostels,” said Mr. Jain.

He said that it was disappointing that despite the recommendations about monitoring of these care homes given to the State government a year ago, the authorities did not act upon them.

“The recommendations include installation of CCTVs in care homes, making inmates of the home aware about the JJ Act and The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012, functionaries of these homes should be trained to prevent abuse and violation of guidelines should be inquired by senior level officials. But nothing has been done,” said Mr. Jain.

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Printable version | Mar 27, 2020 1:08:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/odisha-lacks-sincerity-in-monitoring-child-care-homes/article25737566.ece

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