Lack of heath care facilities and non-availability of doctors on call have brought to light several irregularities at the government juvenile home in Bhopal.
Four children at the juvenile home for boys at Jehangirabad kept ailing from skin diseases for more than seven days but no doctor came to check on them.
The incident came to light after chairperson of child rights commission Raghvendra Sharma’s surprise inspection on Monday.
As per Supreme Court guidelines and the Juvenile Justice Act, juvenile homes have to meet the medical, nutritional, educational and other needs of the children to improve their quality of life.
The law says that medical treatment should be on referral for children. Sources said Dr Preeti Shrivastava, the doctor supposed to be on duty, has not visited the juvenile home from the last 15 days.
“I met every teenager. They told me that they had developed certain infections on their private body parts and they could not share it with the female warden and the doctor. I immediately called the chief medical and health officer of Bhopal to look into the matter. She then arranged for the doctor,” Sharma said.
HT also found out that the post of the counselor at the juvenile home has been vacant for a long time due to which the inmates are unable to share their plight.
“Some of the juvenile homes get a weekly check-up done for inmates but if they are ailing, an immediate treatment should be given. We found a lot of irregularities at government-run juvenile homes in the state. The counselors are hardly found in any of these. During my last visit, I met seven rape victims at the juvenile home in Nehru Nagar who were not getting any medical facilities or check-ups despite being pregnant,” said child rights activist Prasant Dubey.
Sources at the juvenile home said, “The capacity of the home is only 50 inmates but keeping 70-80 inmates is very common here.”