Thursday, July 18, 2013

Lack of transparency, casual attitude on the part of top Central child rights body baffle activists

In a Bt cotton  field...
By Our Representative
A high-level consultation in Ahmedabad by the National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), New Delhi, a statutory body under the ministry of woman and child, Government of India, is said to have left several state non-government organisations (NGOs) dissatisfied over the top body's refusal to show transparency. Chaired by Nina Nayak, member, NCPCR, with consultant Swati Chavla sitting next to her, a statement by Dalit Hak Rakshak Manch (DHRM), one of the participating organisations, said, while the meeting was meant for discussing issues on child rights, the media was not invited. On the other hand, state intelligence bureau (IB) persons sat through to note what all Gujarat activists had to say.
The statement said, even the invitation letter sent to a few NGOs for the consultation very casual. It was sent to "some selected persons" and was signed by one ‘Swetaben’ from NCPCR, whom nobody knew. The organisers neither bothered to take note of the fact that Nina Nayak and Swati Chawla would take the meeting with the NGOs. In fact, the "organisers wanted to keep this a low  profile", and the result was, "an important event was turned to a futile exercise; public money was wasted."
Nina Nayak requested Gujarat activists to submit their petitions in English, but "she failed to give explanation on inaction on those complaints which have been written in English", DHRM statement said. Prominent NGO activists including Dipak Dabhi (ASVS), Jayanti Makwana (BAAG), Mujahid Nafis (Manav Garima), Raju and Dipti, Jayanti Makwana (BST), Rajesh Bhatt, Sarifa and Nurjahan (Aman Samuday), Dipak Rohit, Nirjari and Binal (DHRM) did not like such an approach.
"All activists unanimously raised their voice against the apathy of the Gujarat government in solving child rights issues", the statement said, quoting Rajesh Solanki of DHRM, who raised the issue of mismanagement of juvenile homes in Gujarat. Giving an example, he said, Kutch-Saurashtra's seven out of eight district observation homes have been converted into children homes. The result is, children from all the districts are brought to Rajkot, where alone an observation home functions.
During the meeting, Sarifa narrated the plight of minority students in a government school near Bombay Hotel area in Narol where tanker comes once in a day, and for the remaining time kids remains thirsty, and where not a single rule of the right to education Act is followed. Mujahid wondered what happened to his applications forwarded to the NCPCR. Mehul Pandya lamented the plight of construction workers without giving any single incident."
Nirjari from DHRM said that she had contacted all the state counterparts of the NCPCR members and invited them at a recent consultation on juvenile homes, but none of them turned up. She added, several officials were asked to  remain aloof from the consultation. Certain major NGOs like Prayas were not even invited by the organisers of the NCPCR meet, which was held at the Circuit House in Ahmedabad, the statement regretted.

1 comment:

PANKTI JOG said...

Yes we too had similar experience. Commission representatives went to Maliya region, and we were not informed tiill last moment.. so Issues of Agariyas could not be represented during their field visit.
then next day... field people came to Rajkot... to make representation.