Madhya Pradesh asked to set up child rights body

October 24th, 2009 - 8:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Bhopal, Oct 24 (IANS) The Child Rights Observatory - an independent child rights monitoring body comprising of civil society groups, NGOs, academics and media persons - Saturday urged the Madhya Pradesh government to set up a board or mission for child rights.
The recommendation was made in its report “State of MP’s Children”, released by Justice D.M. Dharmadhikari, the chairman of the state Human Rights Commission, along with students Priya Singh & Abhinash Mishra and Unicef state representative Hamid El Bashir at a function here.

The group, set up in November 2007, also advocated the establishment of child rights centres, clubs, forums and parliaments in schools to encourage child participation in issues of children.

The group also stressed the need of sustained participation of the local community and civil society and engaging local elected bodies in solving the issues of children.

“The state has in the last ten years progressed in literacy, education and provisioning of schooling, yet it lacks on indicators like infant mortality rate, malnourishment, basic poverty and infrastructure,” says the report adding that the state also has challenges in school dropouts and high rates of crime against children.

In his address, Justice Dharmadhikari said children in the state face many challenges and there is need to engage civil society organisations, and capitalise on their support to bring change for favour of children. El Bashir said the report will benefit policy makers, help in promoting debate on children and create a movement for development of children in the state.

Priya of class 8 and Abhinash Mishra of class 9 called upon the state to encourage their participation and provide for protection of their rights.

Principal Secretary, Women and Child Development Tinoo Joshi spoke about the state government’s initiatives for child development, nutrition and protection, while Child Rights Observatory president Nirmal Buch stressed that the report calls for zero tolerance for child rights violation in the state.

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