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Operation Smile-II to Trace Missing Children Begins Today

RAIPUR: Union ministry of women and child and home affairs have issued order to Chhattisgarh and each district collector to launch yet another dedicated campaign ‘Operation Smile II’ from January 1 to 31, 2016 to intensify tracking of missing children and conduct raids at public places to identify street children.

Chhattisgarh chief secretary Vivek Dhand has issued orders to departments concerned, including departments of women and child, labour, ChildLine, anti-human trafficking units, CID and state police.

While state has nearly 1,000 children untraced since its conception in 2000, of the 1,861 children, who went missing between January and October 2015, about 359 children are yet to be traced. “During the one-month operation, state police and departments would deploy teams and keep strict vigilance, screen children residing at shelter homes, bus stands, railway station and considering them among missing would initiate to rehabilitate them,” a senior police offer told TOI.

MHA has asked state to upload and document each rescue and recovery of child on the missing child portal of the ministry and the campaign has to be carried out by trained police personnel, who would later be rewarded based on their performance. Delhi based NGO Shakti Vahini would work in support for the cause.

RishiKant of the NGO said, “We have been working on police training to develop clear understanding about various provisions of POCSO Act, juvenile justice Act, protection of child rights act, CrPC and IPC.”

Operation smile-I was launched in July in 2015 for the first time after successfully tracing thousands of children during an operation conducted by Ghaziabad district police. It was followed after Supreme Court directed all states to get vigilant about missing children and those loitering on streets.

In joint operation with state and Ghaziabad police in January, the teams succeeded in tracing 99 kids while 631 were traced in July, of which Durg district performed best in tracing maximum number of children.

Chhattisgarh police had succeeded in tracing about 1,800 children from Delhi, Punjab, Haryana and other parts of the country within three months in 2014 after Supreme Court had summoned state chief secretary and director general of police.

State police records show 33,116 children and 30,618 women went missing between 2001 and 2013 most of who are trafficked to other states for domestic and other kinds of labour. In a recent meeting, it was figured out that Bastar divisions Kanker, Sukma, Kondagaon and Narayanpur are adversely affected with trafficking.

operation Smile-II (3)

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