The Uttar Pradesh government has now announced that all children in the state who have lost both their parents to COVID, will be kept in shelter homes across the territory. With regards to this, the Principal Secretary of the Women and Child Development Department has issued orders to all district-level authorities. They have been asked to prepare a list of all such kids, after which, the administration will make provisions for their stay.
Nigrani Samities to help in the identification of such children
As per reports, the authorities have been asked to collect all the related information till May 15. The record prepared by the district administrations will also be shared with Child Rights Protection Commission. According to the instructions, Nigrani Samities in urban and rural areas will be deployed to find such children, affected adversely by the pandemic.
In the rural neighbourhoods, Nigrani Samities function under the leadership of the Gram Pradhan. They comprise of Anganwadi employees and Asha workers, who will now help to spot orphaned children. Further, information collected from the Childline Service, will also help in identifying such children. After being recognised, these children will be presented in front of the Child Welfare Committee via the District Probation Commissioner. Thereafter, the kids will be sent to the designated shelter homes.
While a separate helpline no.- 011-234782250 has been launched for getting information about such kids, citizens can also call at 1098 (Childline) or 181 (Women's Helpline) and report if they know a similar case.
One-Stop Centres to be used in districts with no child shelter home
The Chief Secretary has also asserted that orphans aged below 10 can be kept with the girls at One-Stop Centre, in the cities that do not have a juvenile shelter home. Before venturing into the centre, the child will have to undergo a COVID test. Consequently, all child shelter homes will be provided Rapid Antigen Kits from the Health Department for testing all new entrants and reducing the possibility of infection.
If the kid is over 10 years of age, he will be temporarily kept at the quarantine centre and the district probation officer will assure safety, food, care and any treatment, if required. During these times, such proactive measures become necessary for those hit the hardest by fate.