The Punjab government has launched a special campaign to unite missing children with their respective families.Disclosing this here today Social Security Minister Surjit Kumar Jayani said that the Punjab Government has decided to upgrade district Child Protection Units to provide quality care to the children being kept under protection. As many as 18 child protection units have been set up in 18 districts under Integrated Child Protection Scheme. He said that remaining four districts i.e. Tarantaran, Fazilka, Pathankot and Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar were also in the process of setting up such units.He further said that till date 90 missing children in the state have been successfully sent to their biological parents. Approximately 140 children have been kept in government managed homes and other recognized child care units. The Minister said that these children have been kept under constant supervision and were being provided safe and secure environment ensuring all round physical and emotional growth. The government has also been providing special attention to the children who are confined to the homes under Juvenile Justice Act 2000 and National Pan of Action. The government was also providing all the necessary assistance to rehabilitate such children, said Mr. Jayani.
Referring to the proper implementation of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000, the Minister said that special initiatives have been taken to help the abandoned children under this Act. In order to save the girl child and to encourage parents to accept the girl’s birth, District Child Protection Unit Patiala has been a pioneer to take the initiative to give ‘Badhai Patras’ duly signed by the deputy commissioner to all the parents who gave birth to girl child in government hospitals. The Minister also said that this initiative has been followed by district Muktasar where besides this a Crisis Centre for victims under POSCO Act has been set up. The Non Government Organizations (NGOs) were being roped in to work jointly with the state government to identify abandoned children and also provide required protection under protection of Children from Sexual Offence (POSCO).Emphasizing on the need of covering slum dwellers under various child welfare schemes, the Minister said that the Punjab government was conducting surveys for special children living in slums so that they could also be provided with available facilities. Bathinda took the lead in helping children to make their Adhaar cards of about 476 children.