6 girls from Mizoram housed in Dehradun shelter not orphans, possibly trafficked
DEHRADUN/ AIZAWL, December 23, 2018: Following a letter from the Mizoram State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (MSCPCR) seeking verification of details of the children kept at a Dehradun-based children's home called River of Joy, a team of district administration officials and members of state child welfare committee carried out an inspection of the home on Saturday.
The officials who went to inspect the home confirmed that 11 girls are staying at the centre, of which seven are from Mizoram.
The inspection revealed that six girls from Mizoram (aged between 11 and 18 years) are not orphans and there is a possibility of them being involved in human trafficking. Their report reads, "Seven children from Mizoram are staying in this home and they have been brought from their respective
villages in Mizoram by the home-in-charge. Parents of six inmates are from Tuikawi village in Mizoram and they do not fall under the 'Children in
need and care of protection' category. The seventh child from Mizoram is an orphan. But the other six children are not orphans and are vulnerable to
trafficking and other types of exploitations."
MSCPCR's letter dated October 10, had also raised questions on the "unknown sources" from where the Rise Himalaya Charitable Trust was receiving funds to run the home.
Dehradun district magistrate (DM) SA Murugesan when queried about the matter, said, "The home-in-charge showed us documents signed by the
parents of the children from Mizoram. They have mentioned that they are handing over the children as they are poor and can't provide them with a
good life and quality education. To ensure that this is true, we will ask the district administration there to verify the details."