“Childhood should be carefree, playing in the sun; not living a nightmare in the darkness of the soul.”
According to the National Crime Record Bureau, as many as 109 children were sexually abused every day in India in 2018. This was an alarming 22% rise from the previous year. Despite several initiatives and policies by the government, crimes in India are increasing day by day, from rapes, murders, and kidnappings, to molestation, eve-teasing, and burglary. Today, several NGOs and Civil Society Initiatives are diligently working towards curbing crimes and rehabilitating victims. One of them is Samadhan Abhiyan, a young NGO with the aim to empower people. They fight against child sexual abuse and attempt to tackle the problem at its root.
In this light, Samadhan organized a webinar on “Different Strategies to Tackle Child Sexual Abuse in India” on 23rd August 2020. Manthan SVK Volunteers and Teachers also attended the programme.
Ms. Archana Agnihotri (Director, Samadhan) & Ms. Sheelam Bajpai hosted the event. The Chief Guest of the programme, Justice Vijender Jain, Former Chief Justice, Punjab & Haryana High Court and Former Chairperson, Uttarakhand State Human Rights Commission, explained the current situation in detail wherein he mentioned that even though laws are in place, they cannot solve the problems from the root. Therefore, we need such initiatives which can work at the ground level. He also stressed upon the fact that female foeticide and infanticide alongwith child pornography are also quite prevalent and require diligent work to be curbed.
Furthermore, Mr. Sunil Gautam, IPS, Special Commissioner of Delhi Police, also shared his views on how police officers are trained in handling such cases and briefed the audience about the laws that have been implemented recently. The Department is continuously working and putting a lot of efforts in training and sensitizing the police officers. He also mentioned two books namely, “Every Child can Become a Genius” and “Samvidhan Kavya” that are being currently used in training.
Moreover, Mr. Vishwajeet Ghoshal, Director, Prayas Juvenile Aid Centre (JAC) Society, shared his experience about working with victims of sexual abuse. He mentioned that for children, education and the bond with family is immensely essential. He also briefed the audience about his working experience in organizing Rehabilitation Programmes and Co-curricular activities for children.
Manthan Sampoorna Vikas Kendra (SVK), an initiative of Divya Jyoti Jagrati Sansthan (DJJS), is working under the aegis of His Holiness Shri Ashutosh Maharaj ji for the overall development of children who are underprivileged and overlooked through the provision of holistic value-based education. We are grateful to have had the opportunity of participating in the session and learning about this sensitive issue from those working in the field.