Concerned over youngsters being uncovered to unknown folks via the Delhi authorities’s ‘Desh Ka Mentor’ programme and the potential for crime and abuse, apex youngster rights physique NCPCR has mentioned the scheme must be suspended until all of the loopholes are taken care of.
Claiming that the programme, which goals at offering profession steerage to schoolchildren, will expose them to sure risks, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights final month wrote to the Delhi chief secretary and once more earlier this week to say the response acquired was “ineffectual”.
“It has been stated in the response that ‘to protect against violation, mentees are assigned mentors who are from the same gender, it is imperative to place here that abuse or assault or sexual or otherwise, is not gender biased but same gender does not necessarily assure the safety of any child in any terms,” the NCCPR mentioned in its letter to Chief Secretary Vijay Kumar Dev on Monday.
The programme must be suspended until all loopholes pertaining to the security of kids are “overhauled”, it mentioned, including that the response acquired seems to be “ineffectual in completely dousing the safety issues pertaining to the exposure of children towards unknown people leading to potential crime/abuse”.
The ‘Desh Ka Mentor’ programme, which has Bollywood actor Sonu Sood as its model ambassador, was launched by the Delhi authorities in October. Under the programme, college students of Classes 9 to 12 of Delhi authorities colleges will probably be guided by devoted mentors in exploring numerous profession and life choices.
It entails ‘adopting’ as much as 10 authorities faculty college students to be mentored by residents who’re profitable of their respective fields.
According to the NCPCR, the personnel concerned in coping with the scheme don’t appear to be gender sensitised and likewise appear to lack data in regards to the nuances of kid sexual abuse. They are additionally not conscious of legal guidelines associated to youngsters, together with POCSO Act, 2012 and JJ Act, 2015, the fee mentioned.
It added that the letter acquired is silent on the query of police verification and therefore it appears no police verification is being carried out of the mentees to make sure the security of the youngsters.
“It has been mentioned in the response that ‘registration process includes psychometric tests of the mentees before they are accepted into the program’. Is this Psychometric Test analyzed/checked/scrutinized by professional practising experts? Can this Psychometric Test identify Pedophiles or potential Pedophiles?” the NCPCR requested.
The fee mentioned the response mentions that the interplay between the mentor and the mentee is finished via telephone calls.
“It may be noted that child-related crime can be initiated through phone calls as well. For instance, children are susceptible to probable child trafficking through phone calls. Is there any mechanism to prevent the origin of cybercrimes and child trafficking? The response also presents that parents of the mentees enrolled fill their consent forms to allow their child to join the program. The consent of parents is indeed an essential prerequisite for involving children in such activities,” it mentioned.
However, this doesn’t assist in stopping any violent abuse towards youngsters. The duty and accountability of stopping youngsters from such conditions lie with the division. The consent of fogeys can’t be used as a cushion in case of any untoward incident, the Commission mentioned. It requested for a compliance report with supporting paperwork inside seven days.