Cases of child abuse can be tried there, says Judge
The Metropolitan Sessions Judge of Nampally Criminal Courts, Radha Rani, on Saturday mooted the idea of creating a court room or hall at Bharosa, a support centre for women and children started by Hyderabad police, to try cases of child abuse.
She said the technicalities and modalities to use a part of Bharosa as court room needs to be discussed with the High Court authorities. The MSJ was speaking at the one-day seminar on Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO), jointly organised by the Hyderabad Police and Women and Child Welfare department, at Marri Chenna Reddy Institute of Human Resources Development Institute here.
The MSJ said that some surveys have reported that nearly 53% children were facing sexual abuse. Ms. Radha Rani said that POCSO Act had provisions for creating proper ambience for examining children sexually abused. She said that all stakeholders must be aware with the POCSO Act provisions that First Information Report should be issued whenever child abuse was reported and the victims be presented before the Child Welfare Committee within three days. “Action can be initiated even against police officer for not responding to child abuse instances,” the MSJ said. Women and Child Welfare Department Joint Director Laxmi said that 1,248 cases were registered under POCSO Act after Telangana State formation.
Ms. Laxmi said that proactive role of the society as a whole to check child abuse was equally important. “For this, awareness about how children are abused must be created. Let us take it up as door-to-door campaign,” she said.
Hyderabad Police Commissioner M. Mahender Reddy said that e-learning modules having content on how to check child abuse were being prepared by Hyderabad police. These modules would be circulated among teachers and given to all students. Hyderabad Police Additional Commissioner of Crimes, Swati Lakra, explained that initiatives like using video-conference technology to record statement of victim in POCSO Act cases by the magistrate had helped in effective handling of child abuse cases. Thanking the MSJ for consenting to record victims’ statements through video-conference, she said efforts were on to secure permission to conduct medical examination of the victims at Bharosa centre.
She said that people must know that even boys were also being sexually abused. “Boy child abuse instances are brushed under the carpet for various reasons. People should come forward to lodge complaints,” the Additional Commissioner said.