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Delhi Police, DCPCR say child labour cases increased during pandemic

When visiting children’s home, the police personnel always ensure they are in civil dress and its mostly the women officers who interact with children and counsel them to make them comfortable, police officials said.



Child Labour in India

The Delhi Police and the DCPCR have seen an increase in cases of child labour during the COVID-19 pandemic which along with the lockdown has severely hit the income of families, giving an opportunity for traffickers to target the poor and persuade them to send their children to work, officials said on Sunday.

Both the Delhi Police and the Delhi Commission For Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR) have

jointly rescued several children during this time, they said.

Officials of DCPCR said with the outbreak of COVID-19 and ensuing lockdown, there has been a drastic impact on the income of families and the traffickers have been targeting poor families in various states, including Bihar, persuading them to send their children on the pretext of giving employment.

The child rights panel said it has been working to curb such cases through a multi-stakeholder approach, coordinating with all the stakeholders, including Agricultural Produce Market Committees (APMCs), Mandi Associations, Private Schools Associations among others in Delhi.

The Commission is concerned about increasing number of cases during the pandemic, said an official.

Even the International Labour Organisation (ILO) has predicted that with COVID-19 pandemic, the world may witness an increase in child labour for the first time in 20 years, thus, there is a risk of reverting years of progress in this arena, he added.

In the second week of July, the DCPCR along with the police rescued 12 child labourers from Gandhi Nagar in east Delhi. The children were found in a garment factory and cycle-motorcycle mechanic shops and they were not wearing masks and working in unsafe and unhygienic conditions, the panel had earlier said.

A few days later, the DCPCR rescued five child labourers from Okhla, who were working at a bike service centre and eateries respectively. In the same month, another rescue operation was conducted by the body along with the police, in which nine child labourers, who were working in various scrap shops in Mustafabad were rescued.

In September, 14 children allegedly trafficked from different districts of Bihar to Delhi were rescued and 10 people were arrested by the Railway unit of Delhi Police.

Among those rescued, nine children were from Katihar, two from Begusarai, two from Kishanganj and one from Purnia. The accused had planned to take them to different places, including four to Azadpur and two to Seelampur in Delhi, two to Faridabad in Haryana and six to Punjab, Harendra Kumar Singh, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Railways) had said.

Due to the shortage of labourers amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the traffickers saw an opportunity to get the children employed in factories and targeted poor families in Bihar, the DCP had said.

In order to curb such incidents, the DCPCR has started a scheme for providing financial incentive for reporting of child labour.

Anurag Kundu, chairman of DCPCR recently urged citizens to pro-actively report instances of child labour and win cash award of up to Rs 10,000. He had also said the Commission is building an early warning system to determine child adversity using children’s school attendance as an indicator.

“It is in the process of laying down processes to activate a series of actions and interventions in the event of children remaining absent from the schools for more than 50 per cent of the days. This will help mitigate the child’s adversity in early stages,” he had earlier said.

The Delhi Police have reorganised it’s Anti-Human Trafficking Unit (AHTU). The operation ‘Milap’, under which children are rescued, was launched in December 2014.

Under this project, the AHTU develops information, rescues the trafficked or kidnapped person and arrests the kidnappers.

A senior Delhi police officer said many of the children who go missing belong in the age group between 12-18.

Having solved many such cases, Deputy Commissioner of Police (south) Atul Kumar Thakur said one of the noteworthy thing is that even on being scolded by parents on trivial or minor issues, children go away from their houses. Later when they reach railway stations or bus stands, they are brought to children’s home and it becomes difficult for the parents to trace them.

The officer said it has been observed in some cases that parents from weaker section do not even lodge an FIR or a missing report, making it difficult to find out about the whereabouts of the children or match their photo on Zipnet (Zonal Integrated Police Network) — which has details of the missing children or unidentified dead bodies.

“To reunite the missing children, we visit children’s home where our staff speak to them and try to win their confidence so that they tell us from where they have come. In many of cases, children are initially skeptical or they do not open up easily, but after sometime, we have observed that they do share some information about their house.

“In many cases, even a small information like I have a post office near my house or a railway track goes from near my village, have helped us reunite missing children with their families,” said Thakur.

Citing a similar case from his district, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Southeast) R P Meena said on September 12, during a routine visit to an observation home, a team of AHTU met a 12 year-old boy who disclosed that he hails from Loni, Ghaziabad and only remembered that a white temple was near his home, he said.

Based on that clue, Google search was used and location of all white temples were searched in Loni and finally on September 19, the family of the missing boy was traced near one white temple in Loni, he said.

When visiting children’s home, the police personnel always ensure they are in civil dress and its mostly the women officers who interact with children and counsel them to make them comfortable, police officials said.


RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das tests positive for coronavirus

RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das tests positive for coronavirus



Shaktikanta Das

Mumbai: Reserve Bank of India Governor Shaktikanta Das tested positive for Covid-19 on Sunday, he announced in a Twitter post.

“I have tested COVID-19 positive. Asymptomatic.Feeling very much alright.Have alerted those who came in contact in recent days.Will continue to work from isolation. Work in RBI will go on normally. I am in touch with all Dy. Govs and other officers through VC and telephone,” Governor Das wrote.

Governor Das is one of the many high-profile individuals who have been infected by Covid-19 in recent months in India as the pandemic raged. However, the rate of growth of positive cases has come down off-late.

India now has recorded a total of 77,61,312 COVID-19 cases, as per the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare data. The death toll from COVID-19 has now touched 1,17,306.

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Paddy procurement gained 23% increase over last year’s purchase

Seed cotton (Kapas) procurement operations under MSP are going on smoothly in Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.




Farmers Rabi Crops

New Delhi, Oct 25 : Paddy procurement for Kharif crops this year so far has gained “good momentum” in nine procuring states and Union Territories (UTs), said an Agriculture Ministry data.

As per the data, over 144.59 LMTs of paddy was purchased till October 24 this year against last year’s corresponding purchase of 117.55 LMT — an increase of 23 per cent.

Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Chandigarh, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat and Kerala are among the procuring states. Out of the total purchase of 144.59 LMTs, Punjab alone has contributed 95.20 LMT which is 65.84 per cent of total procurement.

About 12.41 lakh farmers have already been benefited from the ongoing Kharif crops procurement operations with Minimum Support Price (MSP) value of Rs 27,298.77 crore at MSP of Rs 18,880 per metric ton.

Further, based on the proposal from the states, approval was accorded for procurement of 45.10 LMT of Pulse and Oilseeds of Kharif Marketing Season 2020 for Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telangana, Gujarat, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh under Price Support Scheme (PSS).

Sanction for procurement of 1.23 LMT of Copra (the perennial crop) for Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala was also given.

For other states and UTs, approval will also be accorded on receipt of proposals for procurement of pulses, oilseeds and Copra under PSS so that procurement of FAQ grade of these crops can be made at notified MSP for the year 2020-21 directly from the registered farmers, if the market rate goes below MSP during the notified harvesting period in the respective states and UTs by the Central nodal agencies through state nominated procuring agencies.

Till October 24, the Central government through its nodal agencies has procured 894.54 metric ton of Moong and Urad having MSP value of Rs 6.43 crore benefitting 871 farmers in Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Haryana.

Similarly, 5,089 metric ton of copra (the perennial crop) having MSP value of Rs 52.40 crore has been procured benefitting 3,961 farmers in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. In respect of Copra and Urad, rates are ruling above MSP in most of the major producing States.

The respective state and UTs governments are making necessary arrangements for commencement of procurement from the date as decided by the respective states based on the arrivals in respect of Kharif pulses and oilseeds.

Seed cotton (Kapas) procurement operations under MSP are going on smoothly in Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.

“Till October 24 this year, a quantity of 3,53,252 cotton bales valuing Rs 1,04,790.17 lakh has been procured benefitting 68,419 farmers,” the ministry said.

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Harish Salve to get married to London-based artiste Caroline Brossard

Brossard is an artist, who grew up in the UK and has an 18-year old daughter of her own.




harish salve Caroline Brossard

New Delhi, Oct 25 : The year 2020, has been blissful for one of the top legal eagles in the country. Senior advocate Harish Salve, who was Indias former Solicitor General, became Queens C ounsel (QC) in England and Wales in January, a title which is recognized all over the world, and also recently revealed his wedding plans to a London-based artist, slated next week.

65-year-old Salve, has been associated with many high-profile cases: Kulbhushan Jadav, Vodafone, Ratan Tata, Mukesh Ambani, ITC hotels etc., and also one of the prominent lawyers who are actively before several courts in India through video conferencing. He divorced his wife for 38 years Meenakshi Salve in June this year.

Salve has adapted to being a Londoner. He lives in North London. On October 28, he will marry Caroline Brossard in a church wedding. According to reports, Salve and Brossard have been seeing each other for close to a year, after they first met at an art event. Brossard is an artist, who grew up in the UK and has an 18-year old daughter of her own. Elaborating the factors, which solidified the couple’s connection, Salve had said they share a passion for theatre and classical music, along with art.

Salve had said that wedding will be a very small affair, as only 15 are allowed to gather in London. It is learnt that other than Brossard’s family, Salve’s guests include Camellia and Namita Panjabi, renowned Indian restaurateurs in the UK.

Amid the lockdown, Salve, was also one of the busiest lawyers, as he appeared in some high-profile cases in the Supreme Court — represented Facebook Vice President in a case against Delhi Legislative Assembly, journalist Arnab Goswami against Maharashtra government and Indian Banks Association in a matter regarding the loan moratorium – and had expressed that he is very comfortable in arguing in matters, through video conferencing, from London.

Salve was raised in Nagpur. His father NKP Salve was a chartered accountant and he was associated with the Congress party. Harish Salve did his LL.B. from Nagpur University. He was designated as senior advocate by the Delhi High Court in 1992. He was the Solicitor General for India from 1999-2002. Salve was called to Blackstone Chambers in 2013. And, in the same year, Salve was appointed to the English Bar. Salve’s name featured on the list of silk appointments, which was released by the UK Ministry of Justice in January and he was appointed QC in the same month. The title of QC is awarded to those who have demonstrated particular skill and expertise in the conduct of advocacy.

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