Crimes against children reflect the state’s failure


In view of the recent rise in crimes against children – from molestation to physical abuse, child labour, sex trafficking and manhandling in schools, and many unreported crimes – it gives us the chills to realise that Arunachal Pradesh is no longer a safe haven for children.

Children constitute 30 per cent of India’s population and they are the future human resource. But sadly, they are the most vulnerable and innocent victims of crimes since they tend to be the easiest target.

Making the situation worse is the lack of manifesto from aspiring politicians in the recently concluded elections pertaining to the issue of child rights and protection. Generally, an election manifesto is a published document containing deceleration of ideology, intentions, views, policies and programmes of a political party. The negligence of this burning issue can be concluded as intentional, since children do not enjoy the constitutional right to vote.

Not to question and undermine the working capability of the present government and NGOs concerned for the protection of this vulnerable section, it’s time people representing children in the bureaucracy and elected representatives started taking up certain measures and started working tooth and nail to curb the rising crime.

Children are innocent by nature, and due to this they are no longer safe, either at home or outside. Lack of awareness and carelessness by parents, the society and the people in the bureaucracy can be seen as a basic drawback leading to such crimes.

There is a fairly comprehensive policy and legal framework addressing rights and protection for children. To start with, the common public could be made aware of the basic legislation for children, like the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act (amended in 2015); the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (2012); and the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986 (amended in 2016), irrespective of both rural and urban population.

This basic step of generating awareness among the people and enhancing legislation towards ending violence ensure that children can value their childhood, which would further lead to the holistic growth of the society as a whole.

“Crime and bad lives are the measure of a state’s failure, all crime in the end is the crime of the community” – HG Wells.

Joram Pera,