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Manipur demands act for protection of child rights

IMPHAL, Nov 26(Correspondent)
Published on 26 Nov. 2012 10:07 PM IST
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Hundreds of people from all walks of life in Manipur at the mass rally Monday have demanded proper implementation of acts for protecting the rights of the children which have been enforced in the state.

The mass rally was jointly organized by social development organizations, European Union, Wide Angle and other civil organizations working for the cause of the children.

The rally originated from Imphal’s Hao ground marched along the Indo-Myanmar section upto Singjamei and made an U-turn before concluding at the originating place.

Slogans calling for protection of child rights, demanding proper implementation of acts which are in enforced in the state for protection of the children were displayed by the rallyists.

Despite the formation of Juvenile Justice, Care and Protection Act 2000 and setting up of Manipur State Commission for Child Rights recently, there remained many lapses when it comes to delivering justice to victimize children, speakers at the rally lamented.

In line with international treaties and covenants, the Government of India has enacted a number of laws and policies to ensure child rights like right to survival, right to development, right to protection and right to participation, but they were not implemented well in the state of Manipur.

There was a need for close coordination among media, police and judiciary to ensure that justice was done to victimized children, said social scientist Dhanabir Laishram, one of the speakers of the meeting.

Journalist Rupachandra Yumnam said that Manipur has become an opportune place for child traffickers and many children were trafficked under the pretext of providing free education, shelter, clothing and employment.

He further added that many child victims ended up in night bars and brothels where they were abused physically and sexually.

Secretary Montu Ahanthem of Wide Angle said that as per the global finding data round about 75 percent of the prostitutes were below 20 years of age and 34% were below 18 years of age.

Issues impacting children lives in Manipur the most include bandhs, blockades, armed conflicts, prolonged imposition of AFSPA, acute poverty etc, he said, adding that around 400 children from Manipur have been rescued from the traffickers so far from various illegal children homes outside the state.

Recalling that in September 2010, the central government had issued notice to all the states of the country to ban the child labours, Montu said many cases of the child labour has been reduce in the state by initiating awareness campaigns, short plays to educate the masses that child labour was illegal.

He said that labour department was also preparing to conduct a household survey on child labour in Imphal East and Imphal West district. Children found employed during the said survey will be reported to state education department and labour department.

He further maintained that action would also be taken to those employers that employed children below 14-year and a fine of Rs. 20000 will be imposed as a compensation for the children.

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