Noting that children begging on the streets is a “common sight” in the city, the Delhi high court on Tuesday, demanded to know why the situation on the ground has not changed.
“I have completed two months in Delhi and I drive a car on my own. I see the same set of young children every day on the same roads and traffic signals. Not just on paper, what is the ground reality?”, Chief Justice S C Sharma asked the counsel for the Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR).
The bench, which also included Justice Subramonium Prasad, was hearing a PIL filed by Ajay Gautam who sought directions to authorities to rehabilitate such children while requesting to identify and arrest people who are “pushing women using toddlers, teenage girls and small children into begging and… crime” and exploiting young girls.
The court has instructed the AAP government and Centre to disclose plans implemented by them to rescue and rehabilitate such children and submit a zone-wise status report for Delhi.
It also emphasised the severity of the matter stating that the administration needs to ensure these children get food and are enrolled in schools.
The DCPCR has assured the court that the authorities have been working hard to help the children. However, the court has insisted on seeing a ground report.
Despite notices being sent to the Centre, Delhi government and DCPCR, Gautam has alleged that the authorities have failed to take any remedial steps to help the children begging on the streets. In its defence, the DCPCR counsel has stated that they have conducted regular checks and have been rescuing and rehabilitating children found begging.