Naveen Patnaik

Child Welfare Committee

In accordance with the provisions under section-27 of the Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Act, 2015 and read with rule-15 of the Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Model Rules, 2016, the State Government constitutes Child Welfare Committees in districts time to time, for exercising the powers & to discharge duties, conferred on such committees in relation to Children in Need of Care & Protection under this Act and Rule.

As per section-29 of the Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Act 2015, the Committee shall have the authority to dispose of cases for the care, protection, treatment, development and rehabilitation of the children in need of care and protection, as well as to provide for their basic needs and protection. Where a Committee has been constituted for any area, such Committee shall, notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force but save as otherwise expressly provided in this Act, have the power to deal exclusively with all proceedings under this Act relating to children in need of care and protection.

As per Section 30 of the Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Act, the committee shall perform the following functions, namely:-

  1. taking cognizance of and receiving the children produced before it;

  2. conducting inquiry on all issues relating to and affecting the safety and well being of the children under this Act;

  3. directing the Child Welfare Officers or probation officers or District Child Protection Unit or non-governmental organisations to conduct social investigation and submit a report before the Committee;

  4. conducting inquiry for declaring fit persons for care of children in need of care and protection;

  5. directing placement of a child in foster care;

  6. ensuring care, protection, appropriate rehabilitation or restoration of children in need of care and protection, based on the child’s individual care plan and passing necessary directions to parents or guardians or fit persons or children’s homes or fit facility in this regard;

  7. selecting registered institution for placement of each child requiring institutional support, based on the child’s age, gender, disability and needs and keeping in mind the available capacity of the institution;

  8. conducting at least two inspection visits per month of residential facilities for children in need of care and protection and recommending action for improvement in quality of services to the District Child Protection Unit and the State Government;

  9. certifying the execution of the surrender deed by the parents and ensuring that they are given time to reconsider their decision as well as making all efforts to keep the family together;

  10. ensuring that all efforts are made for restoration of abandoned or lost children to their families following due process, as may be prescribed;

  11. declaration of orphan, abandoned and surrendered child as legally free for adoption after due inquiry;

  12. taking suo motu cognizance of cases and reaching out to children in need of care and protection, who are not produced before the Committee, provided that such decision is taken by at least three members;

  13. taking action for rehabilitation of sexually abused children who are reported as children in need of care and protection to the Committee by Special Juvenile Police Unit or local police, as the case may be, under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012;

  14. dealing with cases referred by the Board under sub-section (2) of section 17;

  15. co-ordinate with the police, labour department and other agencies involved in the care and protection of children with support of the District Child Protection Unit or the State Government;

  16. in case of a complaint of abuse of a child in any child care institution, the Committee shall conduct an inquiry and give directions to the police or the District Child Protection Unit or labour department or childline services, as the case may be;

  17. accessing appropriate legal services for children;

  18. such other functions and responsibilities, as may be prescribed;