The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) performs the powers and functions assigned to it under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005.
The Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005 extends to the whole of India except the State of Jammu and Kashmir.
Under the act, “child rights” includes the children’s rights adopted in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child in November 1989 which was ratified by the Indian Government on 11 December 1992.
The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) was established under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005.
The commission’s role includes making sure that all laws, programs, policies, and administrative frameworks adhere to the principles of children’s rights as outlined in the Indian Constitution and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Any person between the ages of zero and eighteen is considered a child.
The act makes provisions for the establishment of state-level commissions to uphold children’s rights in addition to the NCPCR’s constitution.
Vision of NCPCR
All children in the country have access to their basic and inalienable rights, including the rights to survival, growth, protection, and participation, in conformity with the legal system, government regulations, and the UNCRC.
Composition of NCPCR
The commission consists of the following members:
- A Chairperson
- Six other members
Key Points related to the composition of NCPCR
The Chairperson and members are appointed by the Central Government.
Provided, the Chairperson of the Commission shall be appointed on the recommendation of a three-member Selection Committee constituted by the Central Government.
The Chairperson can be someone who has done outstanding work promoting children’s welfare.
Out of the 6 other members, at least two are women from the field related to the promotion of the welfare of children.
The 6 members must be appointed from amongst persons of eminence, ability, integrity, standing, and experience in:
- Child health, care, welfare, or child development;
- Juvenile justice or care of neglected or marginalized children or children with disabilities;
- Elimination of child labor or children in distress;
- Child psychology or sociology; and
- Laws relating to children.
Term of Office of NCPCR
The Chairperson and other members hold office for a period of 3 Years.
Provided, the Chairman and Members shall not hold office for more than 2 terms.
Chairman Can hold office till the maximum age of 65 years and other members can hold office till the maximum age of 60 years.
Resignation of Members
The Chairperson or Members can resign from his office at any time by addressing the written resignation to the Central Government.
The removal of the Chairperson or any other Member can be done by Central Government, if the Chairperson or, such other Member:
- is adjudged an insolvent; or
- engaged in any paid employment outside his official duties during his term of office; or
- incapable of acting or refused to act in accordance with the provisions; or
- is of unsound mind and so declared by the court; or
- has misused his position in such a way that it would be bad for the public interest; or
- is convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for an offense that involves moral turpitude; or
- is absent from 3 consecutive meetings of the commission without obtaining a leave of absence.
Functions of the Commission
Examine and review the safeguards provided by or under any law and recommend measures for their effective implementation.
Report on the operation of those safeguards to the Central Government on an annual basis and at any other times, the Commission deems appropriate.
Investigate child rights violations and suggest legal action be taken when necessary.
Study treaties and other international instruments and review existing policies, programs, and provide recommendations on child rights.
NCPCR promotes research in the field of child rights.
Educate the public about children’s rights and raise knowledge of the safeguards that can be used to defend these rights through publications, the media, and other available channels.
Promote, respect, and give children’s opinions significant attention in its work and in the work of other government departments and organizations working with children.
Create and distribute information on children’s rights.
Compile and examine child data.
Encourage the inclusion of child rights in the school curriculum, teacher preparation programs, and training for other professionals who work with children.
Examine all barriers preventing children from exercising their rights in the wake of terrorism, intergroup conflict, riots, natural disasters, domestic violence, HIV/AIDS, trafficking, maltreatment, torture, and exploitation, as well as pornography and prostitution, and recommend appropriate corrective measures.
NCPCR inquires into complaints or take suo moto notice of matters related to:
- deprivation & violation of child rights;
- non-implementation of laws providing for the protection and development of children;
- non-compliance with decisions, instructions, or policies intended to lessen hardships for children, ensure their wellbeing, and offer relief to such children; or
- take up the issues arising out of such matters with appropriate authorities.
Power of the Commission
The Commission, while inquiring into any matter that falls under of CPCR Act, 2005 has all the powers of a civil court under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908. The commission can exercise the following power:
- Summoning and enforcing the attendance of any person,
- Discovery and production of any document,
- Receiving evidence on affidavits,
- Requisitioning any public record or copy thereof from any court or office; and
- Issuing commissions for the examination of witnesses or documents.
The Commission is authorized to forward any case to a Magistrate having jurisdiction to try the same.
The services provided by the NCPCR include:
- Addressing alleged violations/deprivations of child rights under the CPCR Act, 2005;
- Inquiring into complaints relating to violations/deprivation of ‘children’s right to education under RTE Act, 2009;
- Monitoring the implementation of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences(POCSO), Act, 2012;
- Redressing Public Grievances pertaining to NCPCR.
Participation of Society
Commission’s operations will be successful only with the participation and involvement of society. Every organization, whether public or private, as well as all citizens, are invited under the Commission’s charter to:
- To communicate with the Commission in order to increase its effectiveness,
- Should adopt the mindset of defending, preserving, and advancing children’s rights,
- Must respect and adhere to the government’s rules and regulations set up to protect children’s rights,
- To inform fellow citizens on how to preserve children’s rights,
- To alert the Commission to instances of child rights violations,
- To make recommendations for improving the operation of the current child rights institutions, encouraging responsibility and accountability, and
- To adopt the principles of child rights protection.
Article Written By: Priti Raj