BHUBANESWAR: Three months after State Police Headquarters issued an advisory to SPs to inspect child care institutions (CCIs) and verify their status, only about half the districts have been complying to the order on regular basis.
No wonder, the Dhenkanal Police had no clue about Good News India Dream Centre despite the fact that it was running without registration since 2015. After physical and sexual exploitation of girls at a shelter home in Bihar grabbed national headlines, Director General of Police Dr RP Sharma had issued an advisory asking the SPs to form a team to conduct verification of the shelter homes in the State on priority basis and submit the visit reports.
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However, not all SPs are found to be submitting the reports on child shelter homes in their districts. Crime Branch ADG Santosh Upadhyay informed that about 50 per cent districts have submitted the reports.According to Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, the shelter homes extending support to the children in need of care and protection must be registered. However, Good News Dream Centre’s shelter home at Beltikiri in Dhenkanal district was operating illegally for last three years.
“The SPs are verifying about the child shelter homes periodically and have submitted their reports. The SPs, who have not submitted the reports, have been asked to comply with the instructions,” Upadhyay said. In a bid to check abuse at child shelter homes, the DGP had instructed all the SPs in August to constitute teams in their respective districts.
Each team should consist of officers of Investigation Units on Crimes Against Women (IUCAW), Integrated Anti-human Trafficking Unit, Special Juvenile Police Unit and lady police officers for the verification of the shelter homes on priority basis and submit their visit reports. The DGP had also instructed weekly review and submission of report to the State Police headquarters.
According to Department of Women and Child Development, there are 300 recognised child care institutions in the State. Good News India Dream Centre has registered child care shelter homes in Mayurbhanj, Kalahandi, Deogarh and Balasore districts. However, the authorities had denied permission to the organisation for running the institute in 2015.