Ranchi, 11 June-2014, TNN: A team of government officials from Jharkhand and Kerala and over 100 children from Jharkhand, who were trafficked to Kerala, boarded the Ernakulam-Patna Express on Tuesday. The team and the rescued children will arrive at Jasidih, 40km from Dumka, on Wednesday.
The state rural development and labour minister, K N Tripathy, said, “Secretary to the department of social welfare is in constant touch (with the team) and two officials of the department have been sent to accompany the children.”
Railway police in Kerala had detained about 500 children, 116 of whom are from Jharkhand, at Palakkad station on May 24 and a case of human trafficking was registered. They were being taken to an orphanage. Police also arrested 10 persons, including the middleman. The National Human Rights Commission too had sought report on human trafficking from the eastern states of Jharkhand, Bihar, Odisha and west Bengal.
However, Tripathy ruled trafficking for child labour. “This particular case is slightly different as the children were taken with the promise of providing proper education,” he said, but admitted that the labour department too has to be cautious to prevent such cases.
The team of officials will take the children to Godda from Jasidih by road.
Tripathy on Tuesday was also quick to announce schemes for unorganized workers and their children. He said health insurance scheme for workers of unorganized sector would be extended to all registered workers in the state.
He also announced Saraswati yojna for girl child of workers. “Under saraswati yojna, every girl child born to the 2.5 lakh registered workers in state would be handed over Rs 5,000 in form of fixed deposit that could be later utilized for her education,” Tripathy said.
The sops also included financial aid of up to Rs 1.5
Meanwhile, Kerala high court on Tuesday directed the government to inform its stand on a petition seeking CBI probe into human trafficking of over 580 children from Jharkhand, Bihar and West Bengal brought for the state’s orphanages.
The direction was issued by Justice K Ramakrishnan on a petition filed by NGO, All Kerala Anti-Corruption and Human Rights Protection Council of Palakkad.
The petitioner submitted that the present investigation was ‘ineffective’. Only if an independent outside agency conducted investigation, truth can be brought out.