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Mumbai Railway Police's Operation 'Muskan' reunites over 4,000 missing children with their parents

News Agencies | Updated on: 20 July 2016, 15:44 IST

The Mumbai Railway Police till 20 July has successfully traced as many as 4,804 'missing' children and reunited 4,386 of them with their family under 'Operation Muskan'.

The rest of the 418 children were handed over to the state's Child Welfare Committee (CWC), according to figures obtained from the Railway Police.

Three rounds of 'Operation Muskan' were launched separately and each round lasted for a month.

According to available figures, the first round of 'Operation Muskan' was conducted in July 2015, the second in January 2016 and the third round was launched in April 2016.

Of the 4,804 run-away or missing children that were rescued by the Mumbai Railway Commissionerate, about 1,363 were girls. Among the rescued girls, 1,298 were reunited with their parents and guardians while 65 girls were handed over to CWC.

The Mumbai Railway Commissionerate is spread across the 17 stations of the city ranging from CST to Karjat-Kasara and Khopoli on the Central Railway line and from Churchgate to Palghar on the Western Railway line.

The aim of the programme was to curb child-trafficking and rescue children from those trying to force them into begging, the sex-trade, menial labour and anti-social activities.

The Mumbai Central railway police station on the Western line comes out tops in tracing run-away children, with a total of 1,803 children (23%) rescued, which was followed by CST where 768 children (16%) were rescued.

Explaining the process of handing over a rescued child to their parents or guardians, a senior railway police official said, "First we ask and verify the details of the children, and if found true, we hand them over to their parents.

"Otherwise, there is a Child Welfare Committee, working under the state government, which takes care of these children in shelter homes and the process of reuniting them with their parents continues."


First published: 20 July 2016, 15:44 IST