Govt issues notices to register Children's shelters

PTI, PANAJI | 15 March 2012 11:30 IST

File photo of a children's shelter

In a crackdown on several children homes and shelters mushrooming in Goa without proper licencing, the state government today asked these centres to either get registered with authorities or shut down their operations.

The State Directorate of Women and Child development has identified almost 25 day care centres, night shelters and children’s homes, which were functioning in the state sans permission.

Sanjiv Gadkar, Director of Women and Child welfare, said that notices are issued to these shelters asking them to be registered under Juvenile Justice Act (JJA).

These homes will have to shut down their operations, if they fail to register themselves, he said.

Child Rights NGO, Stop Child Abuse Now (SCAN), had raised an alarm about these protective homes, which might double up as places for child abuse in absence of proper monitoring and regulations.

SCAN-India Director Emidio Pinho, while giving a detailed list of these unregistered homes, had written to the state government expressing concern over these shelters.

"Section 34 (3) makes it mandatory for all the children homes to be registered under the JJA (amendment) 2006.

This provision of the JJA 2000 supercedes the provisions of the Goa Children's Act 2003 or any law in existence in Goa," said Pinho, who is also a lawyer by profession.

While state-run Apna Ghar, a home for children in need, is in shambles due to poor management. Hundreds of street children and orphans are housed in these unregistered shelters, spread across the state.

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