Tuesday, July 24, 2007

1,621 kids missing in six months

A total of 1,621 children were reported to have gone missing from acrossthe country during the last six months. Altogether 863 children, including five murdered children, were found from four places, a bi-annual report of the National Centre for Children at Risk (NCCR), which was made public today, stated.According to the report, 21 children out of the 177 missing from the eastern development region were found, 814 children out of 969 were found from the central region, 17 children among 72 missing children were found from the western development region, nine children among the 80 missing were found from the mid-western development region and two children out of the 57 missing children were found from the far-western development region.The NCCR has found 795 children in the Kathmandu Valley, where36.22 per cent were found with the help of various organisations and the police and 28.56 per cent children returned home on their own. The number of missing boys are higher than girls because the boys are more outgoing and mischievous. Children between 11 and 13 are rarely found, while children above 17 years old have a lower missing record.Sushil Ghimire, spokesperson for the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare (MoWCSW), said that the missing and found cases are high in the Kathmandu Valley as the NCCR is based in Kathmandu. “The only means of communication for the NCCR is the police network outside the valley.” Extending the NCCR outside the valley could help find the missing children, he added.Speaking at a programme organised to present the bi-annual report today, he said that the places with the facilities of transportation and communication have a high record of missing and found children.Poverty, temptation, family tension, physical and mental torture, sexual harassment and exploitation are the major reasons behind children leaving their homes and work places, according to the report.

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