New Delhi: The Delhi Commission For Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR) has identified 32 children who were orphaned during the COVID-19 pandemic in the national capital.
Ten more children have been identified who have lost their single parent to the viral disease, DCPCR chairman Anurag Kundu said.
He said a survey was started earlier this month to trace children in similar distress.
“Sixteen children have been identified who lost their parents during the second wave. We have been enquiring about them whether they require medical attention, rations, counselling, immunisation etc,” said DCPCR member Ranjana Prasad.
“We are providing them the help they ask for,” she added.
She said details of younger children and toddlers have been shared with their nearest Anganwadis.
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had on May 14 said the Delhi government will bear the cost of education and upbringing of children who were orphaned during the pandemic.
The government has also planned to give Rs 2,500 per month to such children, and a proposal is likely to tabled before the Cabinet soon for approval, a senior official said.
Anurag Kundu said the findings of the survey will be shared with the government.
“We will ensure they are enrolled within a week of the notification,” he said.
The panel has started a helpline to address the needs of children orphaned during the pandemic.
The helpline (+91 9311551393) also addresses the concerns of kids whose parents are hospitalised or who are facing any other distress. The helpline has received over 2,200 calls till now.
Anurag Kundu had also written to the Delhi Police chief earlier this month, drawing his attention to children orphaned by COVID-19 being put up for adoption on social media platforms in violation of the law.
The DCPCR said it had come across many instances on social media (Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp), where people with information about children orphaned by the pandemic were encouraging others to adopt them.