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Campaign for betterment of orphans, abandoned children launched in Pune

Protima Sharma and Smriti Gupta, adoptive mothers and certified adoption counsellors in Pune, have launched the ‘Where are India’s Children (WAIC) campaign’

pune Updated: Nov 16, 2018 15:18 IST
Prachi Bari
Prachi Bari
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,abandoned children,Where are India’s Children
(From left) Protima Sharma and Smriti Gupta discuss regarding their campaign page in Pune, on Tuesday. (Photo by Shankar Narayan/HT PHOTO)

Protima Sharma and Smriti Gupta, adoptive mothers and certified adoption counsellors in Pune, have launched the ‘Where are India’s Children (WAIC)’ campaign, on the occasion of Children’s Day on November 14.

The digital campaign on social media, and via email, comprises an open letter to the prime minister seeking answers from the government on the alarming numbers of orphaned and abandoned children in the country.

Sharma said the campaign was conceived by adoption counsellors and child rights campaigners after reading reports by the United Nations that despite 30 million orphaned and abandoned children in India, only 0.5 million reach child shelters and only 2000 reach the adoption pool.

“These alarming figures make you wonder as to why there is less number of children for adoption despite reports from Unicef’s State of the World’s Children 2016 Report, while there are 23,000 parents registered for adoption over the period of 2 years,” she said.

Sharma along with Gupta who has also adopted two daughters said their visits to child welfare shelters and orphanages in the past three months in Pune and Gwalior revealed that most of the shelters were ignorant about the rules of linking orphanages with adoption centres.

The open letter touches upon important points of registration of the children shelters, their linking with the adoption centres and also stresses upon giving the children an identity through Aadhar card scheme and to make the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) accountable by making the selection process of the committee member full time with rigorous training.

Dysfunctional NGT bench: After activist raise issue, govt takes cognisance

The National green tribunal’s (NGT) west zone bench in Pune continues to be dysfunctional, with no sign of the government appointing judges on an immediate basis, claims Nagrik Chetna Manch president, Maj Gen SCN Jatar (retd), who has now written to the public grievance department, which upon receiving the complaint, has forwarded it to department of administrative reform for necessary action.

Earlier, when Maj Gen Jatar raised the grievance on the Prime Minister’s portal, he was informed that case had been closed. Jatar then lodged a fresh complaint with the department of public grievance.

In his complaint to the PM’s office (PMO), Maj Gen Jatar had said the western bench of NGT has not been functioning since February 2017, except for July 2018, when it worked for 20 days. “This is because the government has not nominated members to the bench. Hearings have commenced by video conferencing, but dates are difficult to get. This has resulted in at least 26,000 cases pending,” Maj Gen Jatar said in his complaint.

Currently, NGT’s principal bench in Delhi is hearing cases from Pune via video conferencing. Advocates who HT spoke to confirmed on anonymity that there are at least 400 cases pending with NGT’s Pune bench.

“In my view, not allowing NGT to function properly will cost the government votes,” Maj Gen Jatar said.

First Published: Nov 16, 2018 15:17 IST