NEW DELHI :
In a shocking revelation in the report submitted by Jammu and Kashmir Juvenile Justice Committee to Supreme Court, it has come to light that since the historic date of 5 August, when provisions of Article-370 were abrogated, the authorities in J&K have arrested 144 minors in J&K.
The top court bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi on 20 September had passed an order directing the committee to file a report on the issue of alleged detention of children in Kashmir.
The Juvenile Justice Committee under the chairman Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey has submitted a 52 page report. The report consists of original reports from Director General of Police of Srinagar, Divisional Commissioner of Kashmir and Mission Director of Jammu and Kashmir Child protection Society enumerating the particulars of minors arrested, detained, sent to juvenile homes and released.
The Director General of Police submitted a detailed report enlisting the particulars of 144 children arrested from various places majority of them being from Batamaloo, Sadder, Rajbagh, Soura, Parimpora, Budgam, Pulwam and Sopore. Interestingly, the DGP has refuted all the media reports about illegal detentions and has stated that the detentions have been made only as per the provisions of law. The list also states that about 95 of them have been released.
The Committee also comprising of Justices Dhiraj Singh Thakur, Sanjeev Kumar and Rashid Ali Dar mentioned in their report that since the establishment of the committee, it is taking requisite steps to ensure that provisions of the law concerning juveniles are effectively implemented. The committee is also conducting “inspections of the Observation Homes to ensure that the juveniles lodged there are provided appropriate lodgment, bedding, clothes, food, recreation facility, health care etc."
The order by the SC was passed in the petitions filed by child rights activists Enakshi Ganguly and Shanta Sinha, which said that children and teenagers were facing hardship following the scrapping of the state’s special status. The petition also stated that minors were being detained illegally since the restrictions imposed from 5 August. The petitioners seek directions from the court to produce before the high court all the children who have been illegally detained and provide compensation to their families.
The Supreme Court bench headed by Justice NV Ramana, R Subhash Reddy and BR Gavai shall hear the case at length on 16 October.