Imphal, Sept. 8: Five social organisations have recommended “individual care” for 23 children, aged between six and 21 years, from Manipur who were rescued from an illegal home in Jaipur earlier this year.
The recommendation wasmade by FXB India Suraksha, Tangkhul Shanao Long Delhi, Naga Peoples Movement for Human Rights, Indigenous Women Forum North East India and the Peoples Union for Civil Liberties after a two-day visit to Ukhrul.
The team met district officials, members of Child Welfare Committee, Ukhrul, the children and their parents.
“A thorough examination of each child should be done at the earliest and based on the findings, individual care plan for each should be taken up before returning them to their families,” the recommendation said.
It also demanded setting up of a medical team to examine the children and frame guidelines to deal with similar situation for rehabilitation of rescued children.
The children, who are from Ukhrul and Tamenglong districts, were rescued by the Rajasthan State Commission for Protection of Child Rights from Grace Home, which was run illegally by Jacob John of Kerala, in March this year. John is currently out on bail.
The children from Ukhrul are now under the care of Ukhrul Child Welfare Committee and Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan. They are housed in a girls’ hostel in Ukhrul town. Those from Tamenglong were handed over to their parents.
Many of the children are suffering from physical deformities because of lack of exposure to sunlight and malnutrition.
The organisations claimed that there was no plan for medical assistance, proper investigation, guidelines for rehabilitation and higher education for the older children.
“Lack of response from the state authorities and state social welfare department to the plight of the children is disappointing,” Grace Shatsang, chief functionary of the Indigenous Women Forum, North East India, told reporters here today.
The recommendations also include pro-active role of the State Commission for Protection of Child Rights in such situations, recording of statements of the children, a rigorous plan to prevent child trafficking besides strict compliance of Supreme Court guidelines, which say that no child under the age of 12 should be taken outside the state for education.
Satya Prakash, a functionary of FXB India Suraksha, said the recommendations made by the NGOs today would be submitted to government authorities.
“We are not making noises and raising a hue and cry here. We will pursue the recommendations with the authorities to see that they are in place,” Satya Prakash said.