Make India a safe place for children
Indian parents and the community at large need to be made aware of violence against children. It is important to integrate curriculum on personal safety education starting from Class I, in an age-appropriate manner. Discussions need to be held within resident associations, and simple steps can help safeguard children.
Children constitute 40% of India population, yet only 4.52% percent of the total Union budget is allocated for them. Child protection is by far the lowest, at around 0.05% of the total Union Budget over the last four years. In 2017-18, the total allocation for the ICPS, which includes provisions under the POCSO Act, such as special courts as well homes for children, was Rs7.25 billion for the entire country.
This is woefully inadequate, given the sheer number of children who are in need of care and protection.
Violence against children is widespread, but our outrage is sporadic and catatonic. If we really are serious about protecting our children, something substantive that goes to the root causes needs to be done. As a society, we need to be vigilant about the safety of our children. The Indian government must invest significantly more to ensure effective implementation of the POCSO Act, as well as ensure a trained cadre of professional staff for child protection as a vital step towards making India a safer place for all children.