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J&K Govt fails to protect children, Rs 100 crores central funds lapsed
1/12/2019 11:34:16 PM
Ishtiyaq Ahmad
Early Times Report
srinagar, Jan 12: The children in Jammu and Kashmir might be facing immense issues, but the government does not seem to be concerned towards their problems.
This could be gauged that Jammu and Kashmir has lost over Rs 100 crore centre funds for non-implementation of Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) in eight years. The scheme was aimed at protection of children from abuse and exploitation and for their holistic growth and development.
It was also introduced to address gaps in existing initiatives and putting in place a safety net of exclusive structures, services and trained personnel for the protection of children in difficult circumstances. Under the scheme, every district will have a juvenile justice board and child protection committee for counseling and taking care of the children who are in conflict with the law or living in difficult.
The ICPS, a centrally sponsored program for child protection was implemented across the country way back in 2009. However, Jammu and Kashmir did not implement it till 2017. During these years, an official of ICPS said that JK lost around Rs 100 crore centre's grant for non-implementation of the scheme.
The government of India has spent Rs 2141.50 crore of funds under the ICPS between 2009 to December 2016. "Jammu and Kashmir was not allotted any funds till 2014," the official said. Although, the scheme has now been implemented in the state but is still at an infancy stage.
"The state received only Rs 1.56 crore-the lowest to any state- during 2015 and 2016. Due to non-implementation of the scheme over these years, the state's annual allocation has been reduced to less than one crore," the official said.
It has main office located at a rented building at Barzulla. It still lacks required manpower and infrastructure. "Although it has been rolled out on papers but a lot has to be done for its implementation. We need the adequate staff and infrastructure," the official said.
Union minister for women and child development Maneka Gandhi had said that no proposal had been received from Jammu and Kashmir for the release of grants under the ICPS. Later the then joint secretary in the ministry Vivek Joshi also wrote to the state government asking that the requirements for the ICPS implementation be fulfilled.
A senior official admitted huge funds have been lapsed over the years. "Now the process has been initiated for its proper implementation. These are so many welfare schemes, which are not been implemented on the ground. Even administrators are not providing funds for schemes," he added.
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