Child's rights sacred, cannot be bartered by orphanage in-charges: Supreme Court

Jan 5, 2018 13:16 IST
Child's rights sacred, cannot be bartered by orphanage in-charges: Supreme Court

The Supreme Court on 4 January 2018 ruled that the rights of a child are absolutely sacred and a child cannot be bartered away at the whim and fancy of the in-charge of orphanages. The person concerned may be liable for violation of human rights.

While giving the above ruling, the bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice DY Chandrachud also said that they would take comprehensive view of running the orphanages in the country, regarding the mode and method of child adoption, the care given and the treatment meted out to the children.

The court expressed that nothing can be more disastrous than selling the children. This is a situation which cannot be allowed to prevail.

The court noted that human rights also encompasses the dignity of an individual and same extends to the children as well. Section 30 of the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 provides for setting up of the Human Rights Courts and to appoint special public prosecutors.

The court also issued notice to all the states on the issue of child trafficking and gave them two weeks time to respond.

Plea filed by National Commission for Protection of Child Rights
The Supreme Court bench was hearing a plea filed by National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) regarding the issue pertaining to trafficking of children, which has a vital national concern and recognizes no boundary.

The plea challenges the Calcutta High Court order blocking NCPCR's probe into the allegations of trafficking of children staying in orphanages.

The supreme court, through its above ruling, stayed the high court order preventing NCPCR probe into the matters of child trafficking in West Bengal and directed the next hearing on 22 January 2018.

The apex court also asked the NCPCR to make all the states parties in the matter.

Calcutta High Court order blocking NCPCR's probe into issue of trafficking of children
The Calcutta High Court was moved by the Additional Director General, CID of the West Bengal Police, who said that the incidents of alleged child trafficking have been brought to the notice of the West Bengal State Commission for Protection of Child Rights and the NCPCR has no jurisdiction on this matter.

The High Court in its 29 August 2017 order issued notice to the NCPCR and restrained it from proceeding in the matter.

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