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The Supreme Court this week agreed to hear a plea by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) alleging the sale of children at shelter homes run by Missionaries of Charity in Jharkhand.
The Court has issued notice to the State of Jharkhand on the same.
In the plea filed by the NCPCR filed in December of 2019, it is alleged that the State of Jharkhand was "callous" as regards protection of the rights of children.
The Commission also told the Court that during an investigation by it, some revelations were made by victims who claimed that children were also being sold through these shelter homes. The Commission, thus, in its capacity as the Parens Patriae, has approached the Apex Court seeking a court-monitored Special Investigation Team (SIT) to look into the allegations.
In its plea, the NCPCR has also prayed for SITs to be set up in all states and for the issue to be probed in a time-bound manner.
The Bench of Chief Justice SA Bobde and Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant has also sought responses from the states of Arunachal Pradesh, West Bengal, Assam, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, and Maharashtra on the petition.
The NCPCR has also prayed for directions to all the states and union territories to cooperate with the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) in order to facilitate smooth functioning.
Further, NCPCR has also told the Court was after various media reports alleging the racket involving sale of children at shelter homes run by Missionaries of Charity, it took suo motu cognizance of the same. It further avers that these "facts were emphatically brought to the notice of the State government" but there were "continuous attempts to derail the inquiry."
It is also submitted that the Commission sought communication from various states on the functioning and working of Missionaries of Charity, but the response and reports received by it were not satisfactory.