The Ministry of Women and Child Development is formulating guidelines for children's hostels. The guidelines will prescribe the minimum standards of care for children. A statement from MWCD states that this comes in the wake of institutions, housing children on the request of parents who are unable to take care of them and their education due to certain circumstances, not registering under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015.
Earlier, in an order, the Union and the State Governments were directed by the Supreme Court to enforce minimum standards of care required for children living in these facilities, created by the Government system or by civil society organisations.
Parallel to the directions of the Apex Court (Writ Petition - Criminal- No. 102 of 2007), the Ministry is drafting the guidelines for institutions not falling under the categories mentioned in the JJ Act.
Maneka Gandhi, Union Minister for Women and Child Development said, "Children staying at hostels, including those attached to schools, are as vulnerable as children at any other facility like child-care institutions (CCIs) and day-care centres. Therefore, we decided to formulate a set of guidelines to ensure adequate safety, minimum standard of living conditions and periodic inspections at hostels".
"The Ministry has directed the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights to draft the guidelines in consultation with stakeholders concerned and we plan to have these guidelines notified under the Juvenile Justice Act or the JJ Rules," added the minister.
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