Attempts to turn CWCs and JJBs as holiday resorts for ineligible favorites would have dangerous implications. The profile demands person with missionary zeal and unblemished antecedents to empathetically deal with care, protection and welfare of children especially minor girls who left shaken and traumatized by monsters in society. Slight fiddling with selection criteria would play havoc with CWCs and JJBs and dooms objective of Juvenile Justice Act, 2015
JAMMU: Controversies surrounding newly composition of Child Welfare Committees (CWC) as well as Juvenile Justice Boards (JJB) by Mission Vatsalya for all districts in Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory refuse to die down as aggrieved candidates while allegedly categorizing selection process a mountain of scandal, urged the LG administration for verification of documents and antecedents of selected candidates through CID or Crime Branch Department.
Right from the inception there was a game plan to accommodate certain ineligible as well as incompatible candidates in CWCs, JJBs in contravention of qualification and experience criteria prescribed in the Juvenile Justice Act, 2015, alleged reliable sources in Social Welfare Department.
The advertisement notice published by the Directorate of Mission Vatsalya, J&K and subsequent publication of corrigendum No SC/JJ/MV/2022-23/11-12 dated 2/8/2022 clears preset mind of the authorities, sources added..
Glaring example of favoritism and nepotism in composition of new CWCs and JJBs is Yudhveer Singh who was selected as JJB member, Udhampur. The checklist furnished by him prior to interview reads “Not eligible as per the notification, simply BA with 4.5 years experience as CWC member and experience certificate not available”.
Demanding CID verification of experience certificates submitted by selected candidates, aggrieved candidates told JK Global News “Yudhveer is not a lone case. In blatant violation of advertisement and JJA 2015, several candidates who are just graduates and lack desired experience figured in the selection list”.
They manage experience certificates from shady NGOs through unfair means” alleged another aggrieved candidates.
Regarding the experience and qualification of members of the CWCs and JJBs, the sub para 3 of Chapter IV of JJA, 2015 clearly states “The Chairperson and the members shall be above the age of 35 years and shall have a minimum of 7 years of experience of working with children in the field of education, health, or welfare activities or should be a practicing professional with a degree in child psychology or psychiatry or social work or sociology or human development or in the field of law or a retired judicial officer”.
However, a glance of panels accorded approval by Commissioner Secretary, Social Welfare Department vide S.O No 205 dated 13/4/2023 allegedly shows large scale irregularities wherein several ineligible candidates were selected in contravention of qualification and experience criteria prescribed in JJA, 2015 by ignoring highly qualified, experienced and meritorious candidates, reveals an official of SWD on condition of anonymity .
There are allegations that few candidates were also selected having grey and black background which is a matter of serious concern. Even, adopting trick tactics, some candidates were favored with second term by changing their designation from members to Chairperson.
Sub Para 4, clause 15 of Chapter IV of Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 says “A member of the committee shall be eligible for appointment of maximum of 2 terms, which shall not be continuous”.
Thorough analysis of entire selection process of CWCs chairpersons and members besides members of JJBs, it appears that the authorities in J&K UT have twisted JJ Act, 2015 as per their own whims and fancies to accommodate Tom, Dick and Harry for a job which demands qualified and trained volunteers with missionary zeal to upheld dignity and honor of Mission Vatsalya, asserted one female candidate.
Strangely, the joining order No 46 -MV of 2023 dated 13/4/2023 issued by Harvinder Kour, Director, Mission Vatsalya, J&K UT mentioned no timeline for joining report and subsequent submission of documents of selected candidates for verification.
Evading viewpoint on the issue, Harvinder Kour, Director, Mission Vatsalya, J&K in response to our repeated attempts said “I am busy in meeting”.