Maharashtra Child Rights Commission faces major staff crunch -
Maharashtra Child Rights Commission faces major staff crunch
Posted 03 Jan 2019 03:44 PM

The Maharashtra State Commission for Protection of Child Rights has been facing a staff crunch, forcing a delay in hearing of cases lined up at the commission. Of 15 posts sanctioned in the commission, important positions such as post of secretary, that of administrative officer and finance officer remain vacant.

The vacancy — six of 15 sanctioned posts — has led to delay in conducting hearings, commission officials claim. The commission recorded 130 new cases between April 2017 till January 2018. From previous year, it had 118 pending cases. In total, 248 cases are under way at the commission, of which, orders have recently been issued in 57 cases. At least 191 cases remain pending.

The hearing on complaints is conducted by a five-member committee, along with secretary. “In absence of a secretary, we face problems during hearings. The secretary manages a lot of cases. Then pendency rates have increased recently,” an official from the commission said. The last secretary, AN Tripathi, retired in February this year. The state government is yet to fill this position.

According to officials, the child rights commission lost funds to the tune of Rs 51 lakh after it failed to utilised them for Right to Education (RTE) campaign in 2017-18. By March-end the commission had to return Rs 51 lakh to education department. “The workshops scheduled for RTE in February and March had to be cancelled,” said commission chairperson Pravin Gughe. The commission has also voiced its requirement for a counselling room for minors, who are brought during hearing. Currently, they are either counselled or questioned in waiting area or in small rooms allocated for hearing cases.

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