Delhi to set up child rights panel soon

April 15th, 2008 - 8:15 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, April 15 (IANS) The Delhi government will soon set up a rights panel to look after all aspects of child welfare, the ministry of social welfare has said in an affidavit in the Delhi High Court. Appointments to the State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (SCPCR) have started and it will be set up within three months.

A division bench of Justices Manmohan Sarin and Manmohan Friday granted three months time to the government to complete the process and submit a comprehensive report.

Earlier this year, the Delhi High court had pulled up the government for not initiating the process of constituting the SCPCR - an agency any abused child in the capital could approach directly.

“Constituting a commission will bring smiles to thousands of children who were facing abuse at every step,” the bench had said then while asking the government to take the matter seriously.

The commission, comprising six people, would be empowered to launch an inquiry into any violation of child rights, and protect children requiring special care, minors in distress, juveniles, children in conflict with law, and those affected by HIV/AIDS, domestic violence, riots, communal violence and terrorism.

The proposed panel would be on the lines of the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of the Child to which India is a signatory.

A 2005 law calls for the setting up of a panel at the national level too.

The commission members would include leading figures from the fields of education, child health, juvenile justice, elimination of child labour, child psychology and laws relating to children.

The bench also directed the government to take steps to constitute a “children’s court” - also envisaged in the 2005 law - in each district for “speedy trial of offences against children or cases relating to child rights”.

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