Care and protection of children


The first and foremost step to be taken for a child in distress is giving moral support to him or her. It is essential for children to be supported and brought back into their comfort zone if they have been subjected to abuse. Upon lodging of the FIR, starts the investigation if such cognizable offence as reported was committed under the jurisdiction of the Police Station where FIR was lodged. But, astonishing it may sound but it is a fact that recommendations of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) don't carry any importance for the Home and Health Departments of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, which otherwise have a crucial role to play as far as care and protection of children is concerned. The status of child rights in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights made numerous recommendations to the Government in the month of March 2020 for strict action in a time bound manner and most important among them pertain to the Home and Health Departments. As far as Home Department is concerned, it was suggested that Child Welfare Police Officer should be deputed in each Police Station of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Special Juvenile Police Unit created in each Police Station. Moreover, their contact details should be provided to those implementing the Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) for better coordination.
However, majority of the Police Stations in the Union Territory don't have Child Welfare Police Officer and Special Juvenile Police Unit and wherever such officers have been deputed they don't have undergone proper training on different provisions of Juvenile Justice Act, 2015, which otherwise is imperative for effective implementation of the law". Section 107 of the Juvenile Justice Act read: "In every Police Station, at least one officer, not below the rank of Assistant Sub-Inspector with aptitude, appropriate training and orientation may be designated as the Child Welfare Police Officer to exclusively deal with children either as victims perpetrators in co-ordination with the police, voluntary and non-governmental organizations". Most shocking aspect is that majority of the SHOs don't have full knowledge about the Juvenile Justice Act for want of sensitization programme although National Commission had laid sufficient thrust on this aspect and majority of the Investigating Officers face embarrassment in the courts whenever the cases pertaining to violation of child rights come up hearing as studying Juvenile Justice Act remains least priority for them".

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