In line with the Convention on the Rights of Child, 1992, the Government of India enacted the Commission for Protection of the Child Rights Act, 2005 (“Act“) which provides for the constitution of a National Commission and State Commissions for Protection of Child Rights and Children’s Courts for providing speedy trial of offences against children or of violation of child rights and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
As per the Act, Child Rights include the children’s rights adopted under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child on the 20th day of November, 1989 and ratified by the Government of India on the 11th December, 1992.
As per the Act, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights is empowered / has inter alia the following functions:
a. inquire into violation of child rights and recommend initiation of proceedings in such cases;
b. examine all factors that inhibit the enjoyment of rights of children affected by terrorism, communal violence, riots, natural disaster, domestic violence, HIV/AIDS, trafficking, maltreatment, torture and exploitation, pornography and prostitution and recommend appropriate remedial measures; and
c. inquire into complaints and take suo motu notice of matters relating to,
- deprivation and violation of child rights;
- non-implementation of laws providing for protection and development of children;
- non-compliance of policy decisions, guidelines or instructions aimed at mitigating hardships to and ensuring welfare of the children and to provide relief to such children, or take up the issues arising out of such matters with appropriate authorities; and
Under Rule 17 of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights Rules, 2006, the Commission is empowered to inter alia undertake formal investigations where concern has been expressed either by children themselves or by concerned person on their behalf.
Having considered the Child Rights recognized in the aforesaid Convention for the protection of which the Commissions has been constituted under the Act by the Government of India, it can be said that the children are entitled to be protected against all sorts of wrongs which may affect their overall development. It is incumbent upon the Government and its functionaries including the Commission to ensure that such rights are protected and to keep the interest of the child as a primary consideration in all its actions concerning children. The Government is also obliged to take such measures to protect the child for any mental violence, exploitation, neglect, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment by whoever has the care of the Child. Further, it is obligatory on the Government to ensure that the education must be directed for overall development of child and inculcate respect for human rights.
In view of the foregoing, the sudden overnight shift of Mirambika to a place unsuitable for running a school is a clear violation of Child Rights. If the Petitioner Parents so desire, they may file a complaint with the concerned commission demanding investigation into the trauma, etc caused to children by the sudden shift and seek action against SAES, School Management, etc.