RC. No. CWC/EG/0714/14 Dated 07th Jul 2014
The Project Director,
Dist Women and Child Development Agency,
East Godavari Dist.
As you know very well that the Child Welfare Committee is also a court for the disposal of the cases of children below 18 years which is established by the Govt. of India under Sec 29(5) of Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Act 2000, amend 2006. And this is to inform you that all the members in this committee are said to be a bench of magistrates with the powers of First Class Judicial Magistrates. Further, you know very well that, the committee has been equipped with the powers to facilitate the children in need of Care and Protection in terms of their development, care, treatment and rehabilitation under Sec 31 (2) of JJ (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2000 r/w 2006.
The CWC is hereby come to know that, there is lot of misconceptions with regard to the powers and functions of CWC to you. And hence, the CWC is pleased to clarify your doubts with regard to the powers and functions of a Child Welfare Committee. In accordance with Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Act 2000, amend 2006 the CWC can deal with the case of every child who is in need of care and protection and it can take any of the necessary steps such as surprise visits, inquiries under Sec 33 of JJ Act, 2000 amend 2006 or issuing directions to police to book cases and so on by keeping in view of “in the best interest of the child” which is the fundamental principle of the said Act.
Sec 31 of JJ (C&P of Children) Act, 2000, amend 2006 is clearly defines the Powers of Committee as - (1) The Committee shall have the final authority to dispose of cases for the care, protection, treatment, development and rehabilitation of the children as well as to provide for their basic needs and protection of human right . (2) 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.
In this context, it is really ridiculous to say that, a district level authority who is heading the whole development of women and welfare of children in the district to make propaganda against the CWC that it is not having any powers and is a nominal body constituted by the state government. It is an absolute violation of JJ Act. In this situation, why the CWC can’t take necessary action and why doesn’t it complaint to your superior authorities to take further action against you?
Because, the CWC is having the powers Under Sec 54 of JJ Act 2000 amend 2006 the CWC is having powers for Procedure in inquiries, appeals and revision proceedings.- (1)Save as otherwise expressly provided by this Act, a competent authority while holding any inquiry under any of the provisions of this Act, shall follow such procedure as may be prescribed and subject thereto, shall follow, as far as may be, the procedure laid down in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) for trials in summons cases. (2) Save as otherwise expressly provided by or under this Act, the procedure to be followed in hearing appeals or revision proceedings under this Act shall be, as far as practicable, in accordance with the provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974).
Given under my hand with the seal of CWC dated this 07th Jul 2014
Cc: To The Secretary, District Legal Services Authority, East Godavari District,
To The Commissioner, Dept of Women Development and Child Welfare, Govt of AP.
To The Principal Secretary, Dept of Women Development and Child Welfare, Govt of AP
To The Members, SCPCR.
(Names changed to maintain anonymity)