Clear outstanding dues of children’s homes in a week: HC to Maharashtra govt
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Clear outstanding dues of children’s homes in a week: HC to Maharashtra govt

Observing that children’s homes cannot function without much-needed government aid, the Bombay high court directed Maharashtra government to ensure that all outstanding grants payable to the Home for Mentally Deficient Children at Mankhurd up-to-date are paid by the government in a week.

mumbai Updated: Sep 01, 2018 09:31 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
chindren's home,bombay high court,maharashtra government
The bench of Justice Abhay Oka and Justice AM Dhavale also directed the state government to clear the outstanding dues of other children’s homes also at the earliest.(File Photo)

Observing that children’s homes cannot function without much-needed government aid, the Bombay high court on Friday directed Maharashtra government to ensure that all outstanding grants payable to the Home for Mentally Deficient Children at Mankhurd up-to-date are paid by the government within a week.

The bench of Justice Abhay Oka and Justice AM Dhavale also directed the state government to clear the outstanding dues of other children’s homes also at the earliest.

It has warned to take serious view of the matter if the government failed to release the outstanding amounts to the home by next Thursday. It was irked to note that substantial part of the non-salary grant for the Home, run by the Children’s Aid Society, for the financial years 2015-16, 2016-17 and 2017-18 were not paid by the government, whereas salary grant – grant meant for salary of the staff of the Children’s Aid Society too was held for a very long time.

“The report of the three-member committee reveals shocking state of affairs at the Home for Mentally Deficient Children,” said the bench, referring to a report of visit to the home by senior officials from the Women and Child Development Department.

The report disclosed that the home for the special children was run completely on government grants, but more than half of the non-salary grants for past three financial years and 80% advance of the current financial year had not been paid by the government to the institution.

“How do you expect this institution to function without grants,” said the judges annoyed at the lethargic approach of the government officials. “How will the institution survive,” they sought to know. “There are 150 mentally deficient children there at this home at Mankhurd…they will need food and their other daily requirements will also have to be taken care of.”

The court was hearing two public interest litigations regarding children’s homes in Mumbai. One of the PILs is filed by social activist Sangita Punekar complaining about a specific incident at the Home for Mentally Deficient Children at Mankhurd.

During the course of hearing on the PILs on Friday, government pleader Abhinandan Vagyani informed the court that the government has taken a policy decision to increase the non-salary grant per children for mentally deficient children’s homes from Rs 1,500 per month to Rs2,000.

First Published: Sep 01, 2018 09:31 IST