Child rights body directs social media platforms to share origin of posts advertising adoption of Covid orphans
The commission said that it had received complaints about many social media pages and posts that publicized the adoption of children orphaned due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a letter addressed to social media platforms like WhatsApp, Twitter, Facebook and Telegram, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) asked them to report the origin, IP address and other relevant details of any post on their platform that advertises direct adoption of children who lost their parents due to Covid-19. The rights body also warned of strict action in case of non-compliance.
"In case of inaction or non-reporting of the same from your (social media platforms) end, to the commission or to law enforcement authorities, the commission will be compelled to take strict action against your good office," The NCPCR letter read.
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"It is requested that compliance/action taken report of the same, may be sent to the Commission within 10 days," the commission added.
The commission said that it had received complaints about many social media pages and posts that publicized the adoption of children orphaned due to the coronavirus pandemic. In the letter, the apex child rights body said that all such adoptions, which happen without following the procedures of the Juvenile Justice Act, are illegal and in violation of the law.
The NCPCR said that the Supreme Court has directed that no adoption of affected children should be permitted contrary to the provisions of the Juvenile Justice Act, 2015. The apex court had also ordered the state governments and Union territories to take action against NGOs or individuals involved in illegal adoptions.
"Any child who is without family support, orphan, abandoned or lost must be reported to ChildLine services, nearest police station, child welfare committee or to a district child protection unit. The information regarding such a child is to be given to the authorities at the time prescribed ie, within 24 hours. In case of failure of reporting of such a child within the prescribed limit, the Act provides for punitive punishment for the same under Section 34," the commission informed adding that non-reportage of such a child or placing the child in adoption without following due process is illegal and liable to punishment.
More than 3,000 children have been orphaned during the pandemic and over 26,000 children have lost one of their parents, according to the commission, PTI reported.