Children cannot fight for their own rights, so having laws protecting such rights is not enough, people need to be aware of them and fight for them, Kushal Singh, chairperson, NCPCR, said Friday.
Speaking at the 24th edition of the Tara Ali Baig Memorial Lecture organised by SOS Children’s Village here, Singh, who heads the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) said: “Sensitisation of the law on child rights among common people is necessary, still many are not aware of the laws pertaining to child rights. Knowledge of child rights should be widespread as the kids are vulnerable and cannot fight alone for their rights.”
Singh said the NCPCR was working to strengthen laws on child rights.
“We also have asked the government to expand the course of the child labour act to cover children up to the age of 18. Right now, it covers only children up to 14 years old. Children from 14 to 18 years old are also very vulnerable,” she said.
The Child Labour Prohibition and Regulation Act (CLPRA) should be brought in line with the Right to Education (RTE) Act, she said.
Singh said the right to education too should extend to children up to the age of 18. At present, the act covers children up to 14 years old.
Recalling the contribution of Tara Ali Baig, who headed the SOS Children’s Villages for 22 years from 1967 to her death in 1989, S. Sandilya, president of SOS Children’s Village said: “NGOs like us who are working for child rights are always looking forward for funds from European countries. Nearly 65 percent of our funds are from abroad and 35 percent is from India. If we have more funds from our country it will be more helpful.”
SOS Children’s Village is an international organisation which provides family-based care to children without parents all over world.
In India, there are 33 children’s villages, which provide shelter and family care to nearly 6,500 children.