Chennai gets two more Child Welfare Committees

According to the order, the existing CWC will be reassigned for Chennai Central zone and the two new ones for Chennai North and Chennai South.

For speedy completion of cases pertaining to children in need of care and protection, the Government has issued an order for the establishment of two more Child Welfare Committees (CWC) in addition to the existing one.

The chairpersons and members of the CWCs have been assigned. While child rights experts welcome the move, they point out that the government should also ensure that there are adequate supportive services.

According to the order, the existing CWC will be reassigned for Chennai Central zone and the two new ones for Chennai North and Chennai South. A sum of ₹21.25 lakh has been assigned for the two CWCs.

Each CWC will have jurisdiction over three police districts. North CWC will handle cases from Pulianthope, Washermanpet and Flower Bazaar district; Central CWC will attend to cases from Kilpauk, Triplicane and Anna Nagar. T. Nagar, Adyar and Mylapore police districts will fall under the South CWC.

Every CWC will comprise one chair person and four members.

“In Chennai, the case load pertaining to children in need of care and protection is high. Hence the need for additional CWCs was felt two years ago. Now it has been constituted. Now we hope the load will be equally distributed,” said Andrew Sesuraj M., professor, Loyola Knowledge Hub for Excellence in Child Protection.

Girija Kumarbabu, child rights consultant, said that with more CWCs, each case can be given proper attention and disposed of quickly. “There are a lot of decisions that need to be taken on behalf of the children and each one takes time. Now, since the cases will be distributed, we hope to get a quicker response,” she said.

However, she felt there was need for more government children homes. “Now that we have three CWCs, we need more government children homes to accommodate the children when their case is pending with the committee,” she explained.

“Besides”, she added, “supportive services such as counselling, language experts to help translate statements of children from other States and adequate police strength to take back the children to their homes are also needed, along with the additional CWCs.”

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