BHUBANESWAR: The first ever social audit by National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) reveals all is not well with the child care homes in Odisha.
As many as 175 homes, accounting for 68 per cent (pc) of the child care institutions (CCIs) in the State do not have adequate measures to prevent any form of physical, emotional abuse of children that results in trauma, it says.
Odisha is among worst performing five states where over 60 per cent shelter homes lack adequate measures to prevent abuse.
Others are Tripura (86.8 pc), Karnataka (74.2 pc), Kerala (63.4 pc) and Assam (60.9 pc). As per the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Model Rules, 2016), every CCI should ensure that there is no abuse, neglect and maltreatment to any child besides a well laid out mechanism to respond to these abuses.
Odisha has 257 CCIs for accommodating children, of which 20 are Government run and the rest 237 are managed by NGOs and trusts. While 140 centres have sheltered both boys and girls, 76 centres have accommodated only boys and 41 only girls. As many as 58.8 pc centres do not have counsellor and 58.4 pc homes lack house mother/house father.
Though the JJ Model Rules mandates availability of basic emergency medical care equipment for those children diagnosed with special problems such as hormonal problems, immune-compromised diseases, physical and mental disabilities, at least 26.5 pc CCIs in the State have such facility as compared to measly national average of 10.2 per cent.
Odisha is among the four states where more than 25 pc CCIs lack child friendly exclusive bathrooms/bathing areas as per norms. Of the 257 CCIs, 213 are children homes, 14 are shelter homes, four each are observation and special homes and 22 are specialised adoption agencies.
The audit found that six CCIs have not yet formed Management Committee (MC) and only 41 (16.3 per cent) committees meet once in a month. Ten such centres are not yet registered as per the JJ Act. The social audit was ordered following sexual exploitation of girls in childcare institutions in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
NCPCR Chairperson Priyank Kanoongo said lack of adequate measures may trigger physical and emotional abuse of children in the CCIs. "We have shared the findings of the audit with the State Government and the districts Collectors seeking necessary compliance at the earliest," he added.
84 per cent CCIs do not have child welfare officer/probation officer/case worker
61.5 per cent have no medical officer, 69.6 per cent centres do not have access to regular paramedical staff
63.8 per cent CCIs have no house-keeping staff
35.8 per cent homes have no cooks
Six CCIs have not yet formed management committee
Only 16.3 per cent committees meet once in a month
10 centres are not yet registered as per the Juvenile Justice Act