Child protection: Parliamentary panel approves bills

ISLAMABAD: A parliamentary panel on Thursday approved “The National Commission on the Rights of the Child Bill 2015” and “The Criminal Law (amendment) Bill, 2015” unanimously.

A meeting of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Law, Justice and Human Rights was held under the chair of MNA Mahmood Bashir Virk in the Parliament House.

Members of the committee said the criminal laws regarding protection of the children should be strengthened and the government should initiate necessary steps to protect children from culprits.

The members also said that if the criminal laws were strengthened, Kasur child abuse case could have been avoided. They also urged Punjab Police to take strict action against culprits involved in the child abuse case in Kasur.

Chairman of the Committee, however, said the bill seeking the setting up of a commission on child rights was tabled in April in the National Assembly and subsequently forwarded to the committee for discussion and debate.

“We are already in the process of strengthening laws to protect our children and doing so to save our future generations,” the Chairman of the Committee said.

The Child Right Movement (CRM), a coalition of more than 200 civil society organisations working for the protection and promotion of child rights across Pakistan, has been pressing the government to set up the commission and strengthen the relevant laws.

The Child Protection (Criminal Law) Amendment Bill 2013 was approved by the PPP Cabinet in its last meeting without any further progress, because later the assembly was dissolved and the PML-N government has not taken up this yet.

The committee deferred the bill, “The National Accountability Ordinance (amendment) Bill, 2015,” as its mover MNA Ayaz Soomro was not present at the meeting.

Source: Business Recorder