Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala
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REPORTING AND RESPONSE SYSTEM TO CHILD ABUSE IN KERALA. Definition . In 1999 the WHO Consultation on Child Abuse Prevention compared definition of abuse from 58 countries and drafted the following definition:

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Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala




In 1999 the WHO Consultation on Child Abuse Prevention compared definition of abuse from 58 countries and drafted the following definition:

“Child abuse or maltreatment constitutes all forms of physical and / or emotional ill-treatment, sexual abuse, neglect or negligent treatment or commercial or other exploitation, resulting in actual or potential harm to the child’s health, survival, development or dignity in the context of a relationship of responsibility, trust or power.”

Types of child abuse

Types of Child Abuse

Physical Abuse: beating, shaking, burning, human bites

Emotional Abuse: including the failure of a parent / care giver / person in responsibility of providing an appropriate and supportive environment and includes acts that has have an adverse effect on the emotional health and development of a child.

Rejecting, criticising insulting, humiliating, isolation, terrorizing, not responding emotionally, etc,

Types of child abuse1

Types of Child Abuse

Child Sexual Abuse : is the exploitation of a child or adolescent for the sexual gratification of another person


Getting the child to touch the adult / another person in appropriately

Involving sex

Exposing oneself

Allowing a child to watch pornography

Involving a child in pornography or CSE (POCSO Act, 2012)

Types of child abuse2

Types of Child Abuse


Neglecting refers to the failure of a parent / guardian to provide the child’s basic needs: health, education, emotional development, nutrition, shelter and safe living conditions.

Primary areas where abuse take place

Primary Areas where Abuse Take Place

Family, school, child care institutions, community or social settings.

Persons involved

Persons Involved

Parents, relatives, neighbours, teachers, institutional staff, peers, strangers, persons in authority – police, armed forces, security forces, etc.

Generally information received by

Generally Information Received by

Parents, relatives, friends of the victim, teachers, institutional staff, counsellors , JagrathaSamithy.

Legally reported to

Legally Reported to

(As Per JJA / POCSCO Act)

Local police, SJPU,

CWC, JJB, Special Court

Other places of reporting

Other Places of Reporting


Nirbhaya - 18004251400

Protection Houses, School Counsellors

One stop crises cell (Bhomika)

14 General Hospitals and 6 Taluk Hospitals

(A Counsellor and Women CI, Gynaecologist, Legal Officer, Women Protection officer on call)

General trend in reporting

General Trend in Reporting

Generally the emotional abuse that takes place in families and institutions are not reported to the legal authorities, unless that are coupled with physical or sexual abuse.

The physical abuses were tolerated as part of disciplining of children and hence even serious abuses were hushed up. But in the recent past due to child rights promotional awareness creation and legal interventions the reporting of such incidents are on the increase.

General trend in reporting1

General Trend in Reporting

The sexual abuses with in family or incest were covered up greatly in the past. The reporting such incidents in family, school, institutions, social settings, etc. are on the increase due to awareness creation and intervention of CHILDLINE, JagrathaSamithy, school counsellors, police and other supporting groups.

Legal provisions for reporting and responding under the jj act

Legal Provisions for Reporting and Responding under the JJ Act.

Sect. 21 – media – negating the privacy of a child

23 –cruelty against children (physical and emotional abuse)

24 – penalty for the use and abetment of children for begging

25 – deals with using children for drugs and substance abuse

26 – penalty for employing child labourers and misuse of their earning.

At the reporting of the case, the police to register case, make enquiry, follow up and report to Competent Authorities – Board/Committees, Principal Session Court as the case may be.

Reporting and responding to sexual abuse pocso act 2012 section 19 to 27

Reporting and Responding to Sexual Abuse. (POCSO Act, 2012, Section 19 to 27)

Reporting of penetrative sexual assault, aggravated penetrative sexual assault, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, sexual harassment of the child, use of child for pornography purposes, etc.

19 reporting of offences

19. Reporting of Offences

If compliant by child – write in simple language for the child to understand

If recorded not in child’s language – an interpreter / translator to be used

If child needs care – shelter / treatment at hospital - provide (record reason)

SJPU report within 24 hours to CWC and Special Court on the need for care of the child and steps taken in this regard.

No Civil / Criminal offence against the informant - if done in good faith

20 obligation of media studio and photographic facilities to report cases

20. Obligation of Media, Studio And Photographic Facilities to Report Cases

Any personnel of media, hotel, lodge, hospital, club, studio or photographic facilities – report of any knowledge of which are sexually exploitative of child being take place to SJPU or Local Police

21 punishment for failure to report or to record a c ase

21. Punishment for Failure to Report or to Record a Case

Those failed to report 19(1), 20 to SJPU and local police &

The police official fail to record – Punishment imprisonment up to 6 months or with fine or both

The information receiving police officer has to:

Reveal his name and designation

21 punishment for failure to report or to record a c ase1

21. Punishment for Failure to Report or to Record a Case

Address and telephone number

The name, designation and contact details of supervising officer (SHO)

A copy of FIR has to be provided free of cost

Any institutional authority fails to report the offence committed by his subordinate shall be punished with imprisonment for a term up to 1 year and with fine

22 punishment for false complaint or false information

22. Punishment for false complaint or false information

False information on 3, 5, 7, 9 with the intention to humiliate, extort or threaten or defame him – punished with imprisonment up to 6 months or with fine or with both

If by a child – no punishment

An adult against child – imprisonment up to one year or with fine or with both

23 procedure for media

23. Procedure for Media

No report by media which infringe child’s privacy / dignity

Not to disclose the identity of the child – name, address, photograph, family details, school, neighbourhood or any other particulars leading to identity

Special Court in writing may allow for the best interest of the child

Publisher / owner equally culpable of the act / omission of the staff

Punishment – not less than 6 months – up to 1 year or with fine or with both

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

24. Recording of Statement of a Child

In the residence or in a place conducive to the child

Preferably by a woman police officer - not below SI Rank

Not in uniform

No possibility of contact with the accused by the child

No detention in the police station over night\

Protect the identity of the child

25 recording of the statement of a child by magistrate

25. Recording of the Statement of a Child by Magistrate

Record the statement as spoken by the child

Advocate of the accused not to be allowed (X - Cr. P C 164 A not applicable)

Provide a copy of the document (Cr. P C 207) after the final report filed by police under 173 Cr. P C

26 additional provisions regarding statement to be recorded

26. Additional Provisions Regarding Statement to be Recorded

Magistrate or police officer take the statement of the child in the presence of parents or the person of trust (for the child)

Use the service of interpreter / translator, special educator, any person familiar with the manner of communication of the child

Use audio – video electronic means

27 medical examination of a child

27. Medical Examination of a Child

Conduct in accordance with 164 - A of Cr. P C

For a girl – examination by a lady doctor

Done in the presence of parents or person of trust or in their absence a woman nominated by the head of the medical institution

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

Special Court to be designated in each district to try the offences under the Act. (Sec. 25)

Special Public Prosecutors to be appointed in every Special Court for conducting cases only under the provision of the Act (Sec. 32)

Evidence of child to be recorded within 30 days of taking cognizance by SC –if delayed reason to be recorded

Complete the trial within 1 year of taking cognizance by the court – as far as possible (Sec. 35)

Crimes against children in kerala during the period 2008 2013

Crimes against Children in Kerala During the Period 2008-2013

Kerala childline interventions 2012 2013

Kerala CHILDLINE Interventions 2012-2013

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

Number of CSA Reported to CHILDLINE : The analysis shows

that Kasrgod is the district where highest number of CSA reported in the last year. Followed by Idukki and Malappuram. 378 cases were intervened by CHILDLINEs in Kerala during the year.

Reporting trend before and after protection of children from sexual offence act

Reporting trend before and after Protection of children from sexual offence act:

The diagram indicated the increase of reporting of csa cases after the implementation of POCSO act. CHILDLINs across the state have taken efforts to create awareness among public and various stakeholders about this new act.

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

Gender of the victimized children: National study on Child abuse 2007 states that 55.04% are being sexually abused in kerala. Where the percentage of sexual abuse incidence of girl children constitute 44.96%.

Interventions of CHILDLINE in Kerala shows that female children are the prime victims and allegedly they constitute 82% of the reported cases.

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

As per the data given in the National study on child abuse 2007 children in the teen age years are most vulnerable to sexual abuse. CHILDLINE data shows that early adolescent groups ( 11-15 yrs ) are more victimized in sexual abuse.

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

The parents and family are not in a position to ensure protection in many cases. Reports and data from districts of Kerala reveal that more than half of victims were abused from their house. That alerts that protection need to ensure in the family and neighbourhood.

23% of the cases were reported from the schools, where the children spend a large portion of their childhood. This points to the immediate attention for the need of having a safe environment in each school.

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

The data shows that in many of the cases the people in and around child’s family turns to be the abusers. This data is pointing towards the fact that the children cannot be perceived as safer or protected within the family and the neighbourhood.

The data shows that majority of the cases reported to childline are in severe nature

The data shows that majority of the cases reported to CHILDLINE are in severe nature.

For the cases reported to childiline 222 firs filed in the year and charge sheeted are 138 cases

For the cases reported to CHILDILINE, 222 FIRs filed in the year and Charge sheeted are 138 cases .

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

Even though majority of the cases are reported within the family and neighbourhood, there is a concern about the safety and protection to the child for their further development and rehabilitation.

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

It is observed that based on the advocacy and sensitization with various allied systems CSA cases are being report through CHILDLINE. Apart from parents, teachers, ICDS and JPHNS were informed the cases to the concerned CHILDLINEs.

Current issues in dealing child abuse cases

Current Issues in Dealing Child Abuse Cases

Children are not empowered to understand and to respond to abuse situations and to resist the abuse

Parents / guardians are not sensitized on child abuse, how to confront the situation, where to approach, and how to approach for immediate guidance and support.

Not willing to file FIR

Fear of stigmatization, family esteem

Fear of friction in family relationship, loss of economic support, seclusion (when the accused is a family member)

Current issues in dealing child abuse cases1

Current Issues in Dealing Child Abuse Cases

Lack of co-operation from school authorities

Affecting the name of the school

Fear of reporting, witnessing, follow up hurdles that may have to face, the wrath of the accused and his supporters

Non compliance to the law by police.

Police shows reluctance to register case, immediate intervention, arrest of the accused, report to CWC & Session Court within 24 hours, submission of enquiry reports, charge sheet, etc.

Calling the child to police station for statements

Conniving with the accused - inclusion of irreverent legal clauses - diluting the case

Succumbing to the political pressure

Current issues in dealing child abuse cases2

Current Issues in Dealing Child Abuse Cases

Lack of sensitivity of hospital staff

Medical examination not timely done

Dealing with the child and escort crudely

Medical examination by male doctor on girls

Lack of Victim Support System

No trauma counsellors available

No adequate shelter homes for abused children, especially for mentally ill, mentally retarded, physically disadvantaged, traumatized child.

No adequate follow up during the pendency of cases or rehabilitation

Current issues in dealing child abuse cases3

Current Issues in Dealing Child Abuse Cases

7. Prolonged legal procedures

To close a registered case months & years takes place – creating prolonged trauma to the victim and the family.

Inadequacy in distress call management, reporting and responding to the child’s needs – non availability of qualified personnel, continued support system for shelter, medical care, emotional support, legal assistance, etc.



Sensitization:- family, school, institution, police, CWC & JJB members, media on Child Rights and the need to prevent violence against children and reporting of such violence against children and positively responding to the needs of the child as the case many in accordance with the law.

Needed immediate and timely intervention of the cases reported and to provide emotional support, medical support and legal support and require continued / prolonged follow up support and compensation.



Promote and support the effort of service providers like CHILDLINE, Nirbhaya, Bhomika / One Stop Crisis Cell, JagrathaSamithy, , etc. and to establish more short stay homes for child in distress situation.

Establish Special Juvenile Police Unit (SJPU) as par JJ Act / Modal Rules, State Rules 2013.

Ensure Special Court is established or designated in each district with required assistance and Special Public Prosecutors.



Establish State and District Child Protection Unit to with adequate human resources and linkages support for coordinating the child protection services in the State and district respectively.

To constitute full-fledged State Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (SCPCR) in the State to assess, evaluate and monitor child protection services in the State, to report and to recommend needed modifications.

Reporting and response system to child abuse in kerala

Thank You

Fr. Philip Parakatt SDB

Member - State Selection Committee for JJBs & CWCs

Member – Kerala State ICPS Governing Board

Don Bosco,Monvila, Kulathoor P O, Trivandrum

Kerala, India.

Cell: +91 9846114098

Email: [email protected]

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