Darjeeling District Legal Aid Forum forum helps Covid orphans
The Darjeeling District Legal Aid Forum, a voluntary organisation that gives legal aid to children and women, has taken up the task to identify children who have lost their parents to Covid-19 in Siliguri subdivision and adjacent areas of Jalpaiguri district.
“We are working to identify those children orphaned in the pandemic. Over the past couple of months, 10 such children have been identified. We have submitted their details to the administration of Darjeeling and Jalpaiguri districts so that they can get all necessary aid from the government,” said Amit Sarkar, general secretary of the forum.
“All are minors from various areas of Siliguri subdivision and adjoining areas of Jalpaiguri,” Sarkar added.
According to Sarkar, two of these children are from Matigara block, three from Naxalbari block and the rest five from the Siliguri Municipal Corporation (SMC) area.
The lists, sources said, have been submitted through the child welfare committees.
Sarkar said the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights had recently acted on an order issued by the Supreme Court where it was ordered that the all states have to ensure the safety and security of children who lost their parents in the pandemic.
He said their organisation formed a 10-member team, named disaster risk management team, in May this year. “The team has academics, law students engaged in research and social workers. They are identifying orphans and keeping tabs on them to prevent child abuse, child marriage and trafficking. The team members are in close touch with the local administration. The task of identifying more such children is on,” he said.