Orientation programme held for police officers
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Juvenile Justice Act is a social legislation and it should not be implemented mechanically, said R. Basant, judge, Kerala High Court. He was speaking after inaugurating an orientation programme on `Juvenile Justice Act’ for police officers organised by the Social Welfare Department here on Saturday.
"The intention and spirit of the legislation should be understood and imbibed," Mr. Basant said. The Juvenile Justice Act has special provisions to deal with offences against children, which should be enforced while taking action against the perpetrators of such offences, he said.
Mr. Basant said we should address the basic issues behind child begging in order to tackle it. Any programme aimed at rehabilitation of child beggars should cater to their basic needs. For this, the police, Social Welfare Department and NGOs should work jointly, he said. "If everyone works concertedly, we can create a Kerala model in Juvenile Justice Administration, which will be a model for other States to emulate," he said.
T.P. Senkumar, Inspector-General of Police (South Zone) promised the cooperation of the police department in effecting implementation of the Juvenile Justice Act. He issued a direction to the officials to apply the provisions of the Act, while dealing with children in need of care and protection as well as juvenile in conflict with law.
The following are the decisions that emerged at the orientation programme.
The police can file suo moto cases in incidents that involve employing children for begging. Cases will be registered against persons who harass children and force them into begging. Children held for begging will be produced before the Chief Judicial Magistrate and offered protection.
Institutions willing to offer shelter and rehabilitation for children should apply before the Chief Judicial Magistrate.
Awareness classes will be held in all police stations on Juvenile Justice Act with the help of Child Line officials. A meeting involving various childcare institutions in the district will be held on March 25 at VTC Hall, Poojappura. A joint meeting with the police and judicial officers will be convened to rehabilitate child beggars in Attingal, Neyyattinkara and Nedumangad taluks.