Morung Express News
Dimapur | February 11
Cases of missing children in Nagaland saw a drastic increase since 2015. However, most of those missing children were traced, according to the figure provided by the Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD) in the Parliament recently.
Union Minister for Women and Child Development, Smriti Zubin Irani, told the Rajya Sabha on February 6 that a total of 97 children went missing in 2018 in Nagaland.
Out of this, 81 were traced while 16 were recorded as untraced, informed the State/UT-wise number of missing and traced children (below 18 years) in the country during 2014-18, the Minister stated in a written reply.
Drastic jump since 2014
Alarmingly, while cases of missing children were hovering at single digits in 2014 (4-Missing & 3-Traced), the figure jumped drastically the following year to 34 missing and 37 traced.
Again, the missing cases more than doubled in 2016 to 77, though 66 of those were recorded as traced.
Continuing the upward trend, the missing cases increased by 33 in 2017 to 103. However, out of this, 101 were traced, the reply informed.
In 2018, there were 97 missing cases, out of which 81 were traced, it informed quoting the figure provided by the latest National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), 2018. Reasons behind the missing cases were not elaborated.
However, as per original NCRB Report, 36 were ‘cases reported’ with the head ‘Missing Children Deemed as Kidnapped’ under ‘Kidnapping and Abduction (Sec.363 IPC)’ in Nagaland in 2018.
The number of victims in the 36 reported cases were 43, signifying a crime rate (R), calculated as crime per one lakh of population, of 5.4.
The All-India figure of missing and traced children stood at 1,15,656 and 7,11,76, respectively in 2018. The number was highest in West Bengal at 16,027 missing and 10,205 traced followed by Kerala at 15,320 missing and 9,284 traced children.
Among the states, Mizoram recorded the lowest figure showing a total of 9 missing children from 2014-16 and all being reported as traced.
Among the Union Territories, Lakshadweep had the lowest, recoding zero cases from 2014-18 followed by Dadra and Nagar Haveli with 60 cases during the same period.
‘TrackChild’ web portal
The WCD Ministry further informed that it currently hosts a web portal ‘TrackChild’ to track the missing and found children.
The portal is implemented in association with various stakeholders, including the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Ministry of Railways, State Government/UT Administrations, Child Welfare Committees, Juvenile Justice Boards, National Legal Services Authority, etc.
‘Khoya-Paya,’ another citizen centric portal was also launched in 2015 and the Ministry supports 24x7 outreach helpline services for children in distress, it said.
“This service is available through a dedicated toll free number, 1098 which can be accessed by children in crisis or by adults on their behalf from any place in the geographical location of India,” it added.