Ambitious ICDS scheme in limbo: Rs 22 crore released by GoI, remain unspent | KNO

Children suffering with different ailments, await financial assistance, Govt in slumber
Ambitious ICDS scheme in limbo: Rs 22 crore released by GoI, remain unspent | KNO

Kashmir News Observer (KNO)

Srinagar, July 02 (KNO) : Jammu and Kashmir government has miserably failed to utilize the funds worth Rs 22 crores already released by Government of India (GoI) under Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) for the current fiscal. According to the official document accessed by Kashmir News Observer (KNO), Jammu and Kashmir received Rs 21.94 crore for the financial year 2018-19 but not a single penny has been spent by the state government till now. In the year 2017-2018, Jammu and Kashmir received Rs 8.48 crore funds under this scheme, just Rs 43 lakhs in 2016-17 and Rs 1. 35 core in 2015-16. This year, despite, receiving highest number of funds for the scheme, the state government has not yet started using these funds for the welfare of the children who are facing different kinds of abuses. Centrally sponsored Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) was implemented by the Union Ministry of Women and Child Development in 2009. The main objective of the scheme was to provide a safe and secure environment to the children who are in need of care and protection as well as children in conflict with law. According to the guidelines of the scheme, J&K and North Eastern States have 90:10 Centre-state-ratio for funding of all components, while other States have 75: 25 for the structural components. Besides poor implementation of funds, J&K is among the four states having a number of unregistered Child Care Institutions (CCIs)/ Homes. Despite increasing number of juvenile arrests in the state, the government has failed to establish Juvenile homes in each district which is important to make healthy changes visible. According to an official document of GoI, Jammu and Kashmir has only eight Juvenile or observation cum Special homes for 444 such children. Because of the less number of juveniles homes, the children booked under various acts are kept in regular jails along with other criminals without proper care and security. Dr Yasir Hassan Rather, Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry at Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (IMHANS) told Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that government should come up with various schemes protecting those children who are gone through different kind of abuses. “Many NGOs have setup Child Safety homes in rural areas and taken care of those children who are involved in violence and other abuses. Government should setup similar kind of initiatives for protection of these kids,” he said.  Mission Director ICPS, Kashmir G A Sofi didn’t fructify.(KNO)