Police has been the premier agency from the state dealing with crime and criminal. The victim was just a witness in the criminal justice system with the primary focus being on the criminal. However, in the 21st century, the police slowly and steadily assumed many social responsibilities, be it for the socially backward, deprived senior citizens or the battered women in difficult situations. However, somehow the focus on children could not gain momentum till the coming into force of the Juvenile Justice Act 2000 came into force.
Even after the JJ Act the momentum of reforms and modifications in the criminal procedures adopted by the police came much later with amendment in 2006 and modal Juvenile Rules. In its endeavour to create the child friendly police upholding all the rights of a juvenile, Delhi Police has created the necessary child friendly infrastructure.
As a part of CHILDLINE se Dosti celebrations, CHILDLINE Delhi Organised Suraksha Bandhan on November 08, 2010 at Don Bosco Provincial House, Okhla to honour the officials of the Delhi Police for their proactive role in child protection cases. For most calls to CHILDLINE 1098, the intervention requires facilitation from the police and response of the police personnel makes a crucial difference for children.
Suman Nalwa, Additional DCP Special juvenile Police unit addressed the gathering and shared her experiences of working with children and on issues of child protection.
Addressing the gathering, Ms. Nalwa said that recognizing the role of police and need for greater sensitivity in handling matters concerning children, Delhi Police has launched various initiative in an endeavour to build a cadre of child-friendly police and child-friendly police stations across the city. The Juvenile justice system is based on the assumption that children because of their immaturity are less able to control their impulses and understand the seriousness and consequences of their actions. Further, it is poverty, inequality, lack of education and changing values that have left an impression on our young minds. CHILDLINE service makes a major difference to the child protection scenario in the country.
Nicole Menezes, Deputy Director, CIF briefed the audience about the CHILDLINE se dosti campaign and expressed the gratitude to the efforts of the Delhi Police. She also reiterated that CHILDLINE intend to make child protection everybody's concern.
"It crucial to sensitise the police force wherein each and every member of the force aware of the needs of the children and is effective in full implementation of the Juvenile Justice System in its letter and spirit. Delhi Police has come a long way to set an example for the Police through out the country." said Nicole Menezes.
Recognizing this need, the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000 continues to empower the police to come in contact with both categories of children- children in need of care and protection and juvenile in conflict with law. Within the Juvenile Justice System, the role of the police has been envisaged differently, which includes a child friendly approach, which has been envisaged as someone who is empathetic towards the child and listens and understands his or her problems, she added.
Praveen Nair, Director, Salaam Baalak Trust pointed out that during the year under review, CHILDLINE has intervened directly more than a 2500 cases and has rescued more than 400 children from Child Labour.
Varun Pathak, City Coordinator, CHILDLINE Delhi introduced the Police officers being honoured to the gathering. Representatives from various voluntary organizations were present during the occasion. Children from Shelter Homes and students from colleges across Delhi attended the programme.
The Policemen have always been CHILDLINE Dosts and have played a significant role in protecting the children. The event was an opportunity to appreciate the efforts of the Police as a gesture of CHILDLINE's appreciation for their continued commitment and support. CHILDLINE Delhi honoured 10 police personnel from Delhi and Suman Nalwa, Additional DCP, Delhi Juvenile Justice Police Unit during the occasion. The Participants pledged and showed their solidarity to work for the cause of children and make a difference to the life of exploited children.