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Child rights panel chief appointed

Shillong Jan. 27: The Meghalaya government today appointed Meena Kharkongor chairperson of the State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (SCPCR) to address child-rights related issues.

The cabinet, chaired by chief minister Mukul Sangma, approved the appointment. Kharkongor, an advocate and a member of the Meghalaya State Commission for Women, emerged as the best choice of the state government from among those vying for the post.

The others contenders were Moris Agustine Jala, Sengman R. Sangma, W. Kharmuti, Benny M. Sangma and J.D. Sangma.

Social welfare minister Deborah C. Marak said besides the chairperson, the commission would also have five members whose appointments the cabinet would approve later.

She said that the appointment of the chairperson was based on experience besides qualification as well as a person who has done outstanding work for promoting welfare of children.

The commission has been constituted as per the provisions of the Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005.

The Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005, provides for constitution of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) and SCPCR in each state and children’s courts for providing speedy trial of offences against children or violation of child rights.

The functions of SCPCR are the same as those of NCPCR, which includes examining any law or constitutional provisions to ensure that the safeguards of the law protect child rights.

The chairperson and every member shall hold office for a term of three years.