Juvenile Justice Act not implemented in Maha, says PIL
Mumbai: A PIL on Tuesday urged the Bombay High Court to direct the Maharashtra Government to implement effectively the Juvenile Justice (care and protection of children) Act and Commission for Protection of Child Rights Act.
Though the Acts were enacted long back, they were not being implemented, the PIL, filed by Advocate Rajendra Ambhule said.
No special homes for children have been set up in every district of Maharashtra as per section 9 of the Juvenile Justice Act, the PIL said adding that the state is expected to provide management to such homes, including laying down standards and types of services.
Only one special home was set up for females in suburban Deonar, the PIL said.
The few existing homes in the state have no facilities required under the Act like infrastructure, administration, standards and various types of services, the PIL further said.
For instance, such homes should have psychiatrists, life skill trainees and counsellors. However, the state has not provided such staff to the existing homes, the PIL said.
As per section 63 of the Juvenile Justice Act, the Special Juvenile Police units are not functioning at all. Also Juvenile Welfare officers have not been appointed. These officers are expected to handle juveniles in coordination with police, the PIL alleged.
The children's courts are not established as per section 25 of the Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act. The police, too, are not bringing children (in need for care) before the child welfare committees or conducting raids in case of street children, the PIL said.
Besides, in Maharashtra, there are not enough 'after care' organisations as enumerated in the Juvenile Justice act. Only three such institutions exist in the state, although there are 80,000 juveniles in Maharashtra. For females, there is not a single such institution, the PIL said.
The PIL was today mentioned before Justice DY Chandrachud, who fixed the hearing on February 8.