As per Section 2 (14) (ii) of Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 (JJ Act), a child who is found working in contravention of labour laws for the time being in force or is found begging, or living on the street is included as a “child in need of care and protection”, among others.
The Ministry implements a centrally sponsored scheme, named Child Protection Services (CPS) scheme, under Umbrella Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Schemes for supporting the children in difficult circumstances including street children, as envisaged under JJ Act. Under the scheme institutional care is provided through Child Care Institutions (CCIs), as a rehabilitative measure. The programmes and activities in CCIs inter-alia include age-appropriate education, access to vocational training, recreation, health care, counseling etc. The primary responsibility of execution of the Act and implementation of Scheme rests with the State/UTs.
Due support was provided under the scheme during pandemic for care and protection of children in difficult circumstances, as per the scheme guidelines. Necessary advisories and coping strategy were also shared with the State /UTs, during the said period.
National Commission for Protection of Child Rights has issued advisory regarding care and protection of children moving with migrant families and children living on streets/CCIs in light of COVID-19.
This information was given by the Union Minister of Women and Child Development, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani, in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.