Delhi Police on Wednesday informed Delhi High Court that it had lodged over 800 missing children first information reports (FIRs) in the first three months of 2009.
These cases were lodged after the police conducted a survey to ascertain the actual number of missing children.
In an affidavit filed before a high court bench of Chief Justice Ajit Prakash Shah and Justice Sanjeev Khanna, Delhi Police said that in the past three years, of the 3,719 missing children (up to 12 years of age — the most vulnerable group), 3,531 had been traced. The police said 399 children were still missing.
The court had taken a suo motu cognizance of the issue on March 2.
The bench observed that the case of missing children was a grave issue and asked the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights and Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights to look into it.
“As many as 824 FIRs were registered this year. These cases pertain to the children up to the age of 18 years missing for the past three years,” the court was informed.
As many as 188 children in the age group of 0-8 years were reported to have been missing in the past three years.
The figures for those in the age group of 8-12 years stood at 211.
“Various steps were taken by the police to keep a check on the issue of missing children in the city. Computerisation of data, launching of special helplines and door-to-door surveys were a few of them,” the court was informed.
The court was also informed that the commissioner of police had ordered that FIRs in cases of missing boys up to 12 years of age and girls up to 18 years of age be registered.