The government’s campaign to achieve street children free status is gaining momentum with the implementation of related programmes.

So far, 574 street children have been rescued and rehabilitated from various parts of the country. Of them, 465 are boys and 109 are girls. The campaign was launched in 2016.

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, in his message on the occasion of the National Children’s Day last September said that the government was aiming to declare the country street children free.

The Ministry of Women, Children and Senior Citizens has been undertaking various programmes to prevent any child from resorting to the street due to various circumstances.

The ministry has been coordinating with the National Child Rights Council and various other social organisations to rescue such children and rehabilitate them.

As per the report prepared by the Council, among the rescued ones, 30 were street children from various parts of India.

There are 255 rescued children in the contact centre, 99 in the socialisation centre, 50 in child shelter and 810 were handed over to their respective families.

Similarly, 184 rescued street children were sent for training and 59 of them were already working in various capacities.

As many as 3,422 children were reported missing in fiscal year 2018-19 and of them 2,540 were found. The number of missing cases of children in the last fiscal year 2019-2020 stood at 2,729.

Among them, 2,219 were found.

The report said that street children were among the high-risk groups and were prone to exploitation and abuse.

Thus, the state organs should come up with plans and policies in the legal, administrative, social and academic levels to make sure no child was abandoned by his/ her family or no child fled from home and resorted to the street.

Feature image: File

A version of this article appears in print on November 23, 2020 of The Himalayan Times.

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