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Use technology, forums to spread awareness on child abuse: HC directs govt

Post by Syed Rukaya on Thursday, December 1, 2022

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Srinagar, Nov 30: The High Court of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh Wednesday directed the government to update the status and ensure adherence to the scheme of law for spreading awareness related to the child abuse by use of all the available forums and technologies.
Hearing a batch of public interest litigations (PILs) a division bench of Chief Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey and Justice Puneet Gupta directed the respondents to submit the response to the directions passed by the bench from time to time before the next date of hearing and fixed the matter for hearing on December 19, this year.
Previously, in compliance with the directions passed by the court in July this year, the government authorities filed a report regarding details of the hygienic conditions, washrooms, quality of food, medical facilities and vocational activities provided to inmates in various orphanages in Kashmir Valley.
The court after perusing the report had observed that the government report was “silent with regard to the facilities required in orphanages”.
“We expect that a better and a complete report in this regard shall be filed by the respondents giving complete details and all facilities that are being provided to the inmates,” the court had said.
In a previous hearing, the court had asked the authorities to go ahead with the selection process of the members of the Child Welfare Committees (CWCs) and Juvenile Justice Boards (JJBs) while observing that some petitions pending before it or orders passed therein stalling the process for selecting the members of CWCs or JJBs wouldn't come in the way of the selecting authority for proceeding in the matter.
“However, before finalizing the same, appropriate motion shall be filed in these PILs so as to enable this Court to decide those writ petitions along with these PILs for appropriate orders,” the court said.
In this connection an application was moved by the applicants, who had challenged the advertisement notice issued by the government on August, 01, 2022, where under the government had advertised posts of Social Worker, Members of JJBs, Chairperson and Members of the CWCs in each district of J&K.
The senior counsel, Z.A. Shah, submitted that since the court has allowed the Selection Committee to complete the selection process but not to finalize the same, therefore, the applicants also intend to compete in the process of selection.

"But the difficulty is that they have not applied on the ground that their rights were protected by the writ Court, however, without prejudice to rights of the writ petitioners, the applicants may be allowed to submit their applications so as to enable them not to lose a chance of consideration," he submitted.
The court after hearing the counsel underscored that in order to protect the interests of the applicant, it has become necessary to allow the applicants to submit their applications for competing the process of selection, "as that has become necessary to ensure that they shall not be deprived of their right for consideration for selection, which they could not avail because of the claims made in their writ petitions."
In this regard, the bench while issuing notice in the application directed the respondents to allow the applicants to submit their applications within three days from today before Member Secretary Selection Committee, Mission Director Vatsalya, J&K and "on receipt of the applications, the applicants shall be allowed to compete the process of selection, if otherwise eligible."

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