Sexual and Physical abuse in Shelter House - Seeker's Thoughts

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Tuesday, 21 August 2018

Sexual and Physical abuse in Shelter House


Introduction- The Sexual abuse was exposed in CCI or a Child Care Institution or Shelter house in  Muzaffarpur, Bihar by the Tata Institute of Social Science after a social audit in 2017. 42 inhabitants which included minors were physically and sexually abused. Another case happened in Deoria, Uttar Pradesh when a 10 year old inhabitant of CCI managed to escape. The story goes around problems in shelter houses throughout the country. To protect vulnerable groups from predatory minds, such shelter house were promoted and built. However, these shelter houses are not safe anymore. The women caregivers and counselors were also included; this is also a huge matter of concern.

 What does the Law say?

There are Juvenile Justice Act 2017 (JJ Act 2015), and National Commission for Protection of Child Right, yet such terrific incidents occurred.

According to Juvenile Justice Act 2015, all CCIs have to be registered and every district needs to have a child protection officer, a child welfare committee and a Juvenile Justice Board.

National commission for Protection of Child Right in survey has shown that 32% of CCIs were registered under JJ Act while 33% are not registered with any authority.

Ministry of Women and child development, which provides funding to CCIs under Integrated Child Protection Scheme, is bound to do social audits.

Who is the target?
Children and destitute women who have been victim of violent and manipulative circumstances have no voice in matter concerning their own welfare. They live in shelter houses under worst conditions.
The Primitive and patriarchal mindset treat women unworthy of dignity and respect while reproducing violence happens against them- It needs to change.  In case of rapes, the victim is blamed often.

Some of the criminals have been running these institutions in the guise of protectors, need to be weeded out of the system of social protection and given due punishments. 

 A way ahead and Conclusion – Civil Society need to bring the change in mindset, and after analyzing the case, one can understand that there are laws and provisions. The implementation part is missing. When there was a provision of registration of CCIs, it was duty of assigned authorities to monitor and inspect the situation. Proper functioning of authorities are also an area to work upon.  Lack of monitoring and absence of inspection committee is responsible for such chaos in societies.