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Can’t you spot missing girls working as helps in high-rises? Bombay high court to cops

The court was hearing a petition filed by a woman who complained that the police had failed to find her daughter

mumbai Updated: Nov 11, 2017 23:58 IST
Kanchan Chaudhari
Kanchan Chaudhari
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Bombay high court,missing girls
The Bombay high court

Pulling up the police for their failure to trace an eight-year-old girl, the Bombay high court on Saturday said most of the missing girls end up working as domestic helps in high-rises.

“One routinely finds a girl child being picked up at a very young age, particularly between 10 to 15, by those who supply manpower to high-rises,” said a division bench of justices SC Dharmadhikari and Bharati Dangre. The bench said such missing children are generally employed as domestic helps and look after owners’ infants.

“We do not understand how the police do not notice all this. We, as citizens, find cars being washed, houses and utensils being cleaned, babies looked after by child workers,” said the bench.

The court was hearing a petition filed by a woman who complained that the police had failed to find her daughter, who went missing five years ago. The missing girl was eight-year-old at the time. The judges said they would not hesitate to take action against the police for not being able to find the girl.

Acting on the petition, the bench had earlier ordered Naval Bajaj, special inspector general of police (Konkan range), to personally look into the matter.

In his report, Bajaj said the success rate in investigating missing persons cases has now gone up from 66% to 89%. According to his report between June and September 2017, the police traced 115 missing persons of the total 129.

The bench , however, dismissed the statistical achievement. “Beyond the statistics, there is this story of a minor before us. She has not been traced for more than five-and-a-half years,” said the bench.

The judges said girls are most vulnerable to human trafficking. “The stories of her exploitation are read and discussed all over, including being highlighted by the celluloid filmmakers and print and electronic media,” said the bench.

First Published: Nov 11, 2017 23:58 IST