NEW DELHI: The ministry of women and child development has come out with standard operating procedures (SOP) on how child helpline “1098” will be revamped and run in coordination with state and district functionaries and integrated with Emergency Response Support System (112).
Since its inception, the helpline, popularly referred to as “Childline-1098”, was steered by Childline India Foundation, which was appointed as the nodal agency for operations on ground through partner NGOs that responded and rescued children in distress by taking assistance of the police and state authorities. Now, as per the SOP, that operational framework is clearly set to change with state and district authorities taking on key responsibilities in execution. It is learnt that work is on to enable its implementation in states.
In a WCD ministry letter to states/UTs on Friday the SOP has been shared and they have been asked to submit financial proposals of the helpline for approval of the Project Approval Board under the Mission Vatsalya Scheme. The SOP has also been put out on the WCD ministry’s website.
“Childline services are to be saturated from presently functional in 568 districts, 11 bus stands and 135 railway stations to all the districts, identified bus stands and at the railway stations identified by the ministry of railways,” it is stated in the SOP.
The Child helpline at state level will be run under the overall supervision of the seniormost functionaries of the department of women and child development or social justice and empowerment, and it will be under the district magistrate at the district level.
A 24×7 dedicated WCD control room will be set up for the helpline in each state/UT and it will be integrated with ERSS-112.
A child can seek help by dialling 1098, send an SMS or an email to the specified address. Child related help requests can be received in the ERSS also. This occurs when a person makes a call to 112 or sends SMS or panic signals to 112. The call takers will be able to assess the nature and severity of the case and if required it will be dispatched to the WCD control room.
The District Child Protection Unit working under the overall supervision of district magistrate is the nodal agency for ensuring service delivery and care and protection of children in the district.
As per the SOP, MIS report generation modules will be made for states/UTs for reviewing of cases. An MIS module shall also be prepared for the ministry for the WCD monitoring of the helpline at the state and district level.