Missing children still a major cause for concern

Published Sep 16, 2015, 11:43 am IST
Updated Mar 27, 2019, 7:50 pm IST
At least 746 children have gone missing since the last year, 11 of them last week
Representational image
 Representational image

ALAPPUZHA: The Railway Protection Force (RPF) had rescued a boy from Puthur in Tamil Nadu and put up at a children’s home here even as missing children remain a puzzle for investigators.

The 15-year-old who ran away from home over a week ago was roaming around the railway station. They soon took him to the Child Welfare Com-mittee (CWC), which sent him to the Social Welfare Board’s Mayithara Children’s Home.

CWC official K.J. Joseph said he didn’t divulge much except his native place.

“Steps on his restoration would be taken after a committee sitting on Wednesday,” he said. Though the government has special squads to trace the missing children, the result gives no comfort.

Satheesh, an inmate of the same shelter, went missing 18 months ago. Arthungal Police posted his details on TrackChild 1.0 portlet and started probe. But there's no trace of him.

He reached the shelter after being abandoned by his parents five years back and ran away along with another inmate on April 28, 2014.

The police has since brought back the second one. The State Crime Records Bureau (SCRB) figures show hundreds of such children left untraced. At least 746 children had gone missing last year, 11 of them last week.

Under the ‘Operation Smile’ initiative of the Union ministry of women and children, the police gets special training to trace them quicker.

Childline district coordinator Sergio Fabian said the CWC had given strict orders to the shelter homes to be vigilant.

The Supreme Court had on April 17 slapped a fine of Rs 50,000 on the ministry for not filing a proper affidavit with their status.

“The Operation Smile is not active though squads have been set up in each district under the deputy superintendent (SCRB). It lacks accuracy,” said Subair, the children protection officer in Kollam.

Location: Kerala