Social welfare minister Vimla Pradhan (third from left) at the concluding session of the Child Rights Awareness Week at DAV Public School in Hehal, Ranchi, on Friday. Telegraph picture
State social welfare minister Vimla Pradhan termed trafficking as “one of the most sensitive and challenging issues” that needs to be tackled by roping in all stakeholders.
Pradhan, who was addressing students, teachers and civil society members on Friday, the last day of Child Rights Awareness Week (November 14-23) at DAV Public School in Hehal, Ranchi, said missing youngsters was a matter of alarm for everyone.
She pinned her hopes on the newly constituted State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (SCPCR), which along with NGOs Save the Children and Bhartiya Kisan Sangh (BKS), had arranged the event.
“The SCPCR will play a pivotal role in stopping the menace of trafficking from the hinterland,” Pradhan said.
She also stressed on rescue and rehabilitation of trafficking victims, speaking about transit homes in Ranchi and New Delhi established by the state social welfare department.
Chairperson of child rights’ society Roop Lakshmi Munda, in turn, praised the initiative taken by the two NGOs, which conducted weeklong awareness drives on the harmful impact of child labour, marriage, abuse and trafficking.
Representatives of both NGOs went to Ranchi, Lohardaga, Gumla, Simdega, Chaibasa, Seraikela-Kharsawan, Khunti, Dhanbad, Dumka and Pakur to spread word on how to stop child trafficking and why the RTE Act was important.
Child rights’ society member Sanjay Mishra said a five-member team had visited 25,000 households of 15 panchayats across the 10 districts.
“Most people did not know about the toll-free helpline 18003456531 and child line number 1098. The team generated awareness in schools, rural marts and district and block offices through street plays and posters. Members prepared lists of missing children during their survey to hand over to the CID for future course of action,” he said.
Posters asked direct and simple questions like “Mere bachhe vidyalaya jaate hain, aur aapke bachhe? (My children go to school, yours?)”.
Munda added they aimed to link each and every child with education under RTE Act 2009.
“Our members will be given responsibility in all districts to organise meetings in coordination with representatives of the education department to effectively implement the RTE Act. They will also prepare budgets,” she added.