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The high court on Thursday asked mission director, integrated child protection scheme (ICPS) to make amends for deficiencies in orphanages and report to the court.

The direction came after a division bench of chief justice Badar Durrez Ahmed and justice Ali Muhammad Magrey perused an inspection report submitted by advocate Farah Bashir, who assists the court in the matter.  

Observing that deficiencies have been pointed out in Markazi Falah-e-Mastoorat, a girls’ orphanage in Chadoora of Budgam district, the bench directed the mission director, ICPS to immediately remove the deficiencies and in keeping with Juvenile Justice and Child Protection Act submit a report. 

Advocate Farah has filed the report after visiting Markazi Falah-e-Mastoorat Chadoora. 

In her report, she has stated that there are only four employees in the orphanage - a superintendent, a caretaker, a junior assistant and a sweeper. 

The report says there is no cook and the girls in the orphanage have to cook food by themselves. 

While the report indicates that 20 girls enrolled in the orphanage have security concerns as it sans a male security or watchman, it says the girls and female employees of the orphanage are living in constant fear especially unleashed by recent braid chopping incidents. “One pair of uniform and one pair of casual clothing provided to each girl make them look untidy”. Moreover, the computers have been dumped in the storeroom as there is no computer teacher, says the report. 

Senior advocate and amicus curiae, Bashir Ahmed Bashir informed the court that the orphanage building is shabby and the girls live there in cramped conditions. 

Meanwhile, the amicus sought further time to file response to the earlier affidavit by the government on implementation of Juvenile Justice Act with regard to orphanages and the court asked him to submit the report on next date of hearing. 

Observing that the orphanages are not in tune with the rules, the court directed the government to come up with proper solutions immediately. 

The court directed additional advocate general, Moksha Kazmi to file a status report by next date of hearing on sports facilities to be provided in children’s home (boys & girls) at Shalimar and observation home Harwan.  

In 2013, taking suo moto cognisance of a news report in Greater Kashmir on poor facilities at government run orphanages-- Markazi Falah-eItfal and Markazi Falah-e- Mastoorat at Nishat—the High Court had treated the report as public interest litigation petition and initiated proceedings against the state.

The court had directed the government to ensure release of funds for renovation of the buildings of the two government-run orphanages.