Madhya Pradesh news: 39 Children rescued from Raisen liquor factory go missing despite government monitoring

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Madhya Pradesh news: In a surprising development, 39 children who were rescued on Saturday (June 15) from a liquor factory in Raisen district of Madhya Pradesh have disappeared.

A team of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) had rescued the children from the distillery after receiving an information about child labourers and conducting a raid at the Som Distilleries factory in Sehatganj.

Later, the NCPCR handed them over to the government administration.

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However, NCPCR chairman Priyank Kanoongo claimed that the 39 children have disappeared from under the nose of the government administration.

According to the law, rescued children are presented before the sub-divisional magistrate (SDM) to record their statements. Following that, a three-member bench of the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) pass an order for their rehabilitation, said Kanoongo.

However, “the quorum of the CWC was not completed till late night (on June 15) due to which statutory orders could not be passed and it took 5 hours for the SDM Sahib to cover a distance of 20 kilometers from the district headquarters on the wide highway and it took 7 hours for the ADM Sahiba to cover the same distance,” Kanoongo added.

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“At 1:30 pm, we were told that the concerned authorities were being sent there. SDM reached after 5 hours, while ADM (additional district magistrate) reached after 7 hours. The culprits made use of the darkness, and the children were taken somewhere. We do not know if the children have been kidnapped, abducted, or allured. The FIR was registered under bailable sections. The various kinds of compensation amounting to 5-10 lakhs that were supposed to be given to the children cannot be given now,” Kanoongo told ANI.

A labor inspector in the Raisen district was suspended for not effectively enforcing the Child and Adolescent Labor (Prohibition and Regulation) Act in his allotted work area.

The action followed a raid by the Excise Department at a distillery unit of a liquor factory in the district where a large number of child laborers were employed.

“The way the CM suspended an official at midnight and took action against him has sent a big message. As a result, the other officials are now looking for the missing children,” Kanoongo also said.

“Labor Inspector Mandideep Ram Kumar Srivastava was suspended. Order issued by the Labor Commissioner. Suspended for not effectively enforcing the Child and Adolescent Labor (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986 in the allotted work area, negligence and indifference towards duty,” Madhya Pradesh government’s Department of Public Relations posted on its X handle.

Expressing concern over the incident, Madhya Pradesh chief minister Mohan Yadav in a post on X said: “The case of child labour has come to my notice during a raid on a factory in Raisen district. This matter is very serious. In this regard, detailed information has been obtained from the officials of Labor, Excise and Police departments and instructions have been given for appropriate action. Strictest action will be taken against the culprits.”

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