Ensure orphanage kids don't live in fear: HC
The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked all authorities to ensure that "stray complaints" of abuse of children in Arya Orphanage and subsequent action does not create a fear psychosis in the minds of its nearly thousand residents.delhi Updated: Feb 23, 2012 00:30 IST
The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked all authorities to ensure that "stray complaints" of abuse of children in Arya Orphanage and subsequent action does not create a fear psychosis in the minds of its nearly thousand residents.
"Some stray incidents should not result in other children living in fear and uncertainty. Come up with practical solutions to save the institution," acting Chief Justice AK Sikri and Justice RS Endlaw said.
These remarks came after the orphanage’s lawyer and president VP Choudhary alleged that the children had been traumatised by the probe. He said various representatives of government, child welfare committee and NGO Haq Foundation during their visits have told the children that the orphanage will be shut down.
"The image of this 94-year-old institution is being tarnished just because of two incidents, that too when we are totally cooperating in the probe," Choudhary told the court.
The newly appointed administrator of the orphanage PP Dhal submitted a report in the court, stating that accommodation in the orphanage is not adequate for the existing number of children. "It would be appropriate if admissions are stopped forthwith," he said. He also sought an explanation from the orphanage for not being registered with the government.
Dhal told the court that five counsellors have been appointed and that the management has been asked to appoint professionally qualified staff.
The court was hearing a plea for remedial steps by Bharti Ali of Haq Foundation which had brought to light incidents of abuse. Their findings were based on personal interviews and interaction with the residents.
Ali told the court that there was no witness' protection as children who had given statements against their abusers were sent back to the orphanage.