Tech to Track Children at Religious Places« Back

22nd Feb, 2016

NEW DELHI: Bollywood tear-jerkers where children get lost in Kumbh Melas and reunite with their families years later, might not sell now with the National Commission of Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) issuing guidelines for their safety in religious fairs and pilgrimage centres.

Following a letter from Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi, NCPCR has formed guidelines to safeguard children. One of the instructions is to attach chips to the kids to track their movements.

“The need for the guidelines was first felt after the Kedarnath tragedy where a large number of children remained untraced,” a NCPCR member said.

New Delhi: The guidelines to safeguard children at religious fairs will be circulated to the state governments and bodies which manage spiritual places. The religious boards and trusts, where there is high footfall of pilgrims, are also being notified. The first implementation will take place during the Simhastha Kumbha Mela, which will be held at Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh, in April.

The guidelines include putting up posters of habitual sexual offenders and traffickers, who have been convicted. Shops selling religious items in these places would be asked to avoid child labour. In case any child is found working, the shops will be closed down. Another important intervention is the prevention of children from begging at places of worship.

According to Childline, an NGO working under the aegis of the WCD Ministry, an average of 44,475 children go missing every year. Cases of children being untraced is also on the rise. According to them, children are often kidnapped or trafficked for prostitution, illegal organ transplants, employment, begging and other inhumane activities.

The government has already launched a website called ‘Khoya Paya’ portal to track missing children. Parents whose child is missing can update information on this portal and the same will be shared with the cops and authorities. Anyone who is aware of any missing child can also update information.

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