26 kids reunited with families so far

Stories of children running away from their homes on being admonished or due to bad situations at home galore as Delhi Police continued to unite missing children with their parents under ‘Operation Milaap’ initiative.

Twenty-six children from different children’s homes have already been reunited with their parents in the last two weeks since the operation was initiated by Crime Branch.

Of these, 13 were rescued from one children’s home, police said on Tuesday. While a 13-year-old boy said he ran away from home on being scolded by his grandmother, another 12-year-old left his home to avoid joining a band party in which his father worked.

His father was so angry with him that he did not even inform police that his son had gone missing.

“There was a boy who escaped from his home in Bihar and arrived at Delhi in November because he could not bear to see his parents undergo financial troubles for him. A six-year-old boy could not tolerate frequent quarrels within his family over his father’s drinking habit and he too landed in Delhi,” said a police officer.

Among these 26 children are six girls who were staying at other children’s homes in the city. One among them is a 17-year-old from Manipur who had run away from home after her mother eloped with someone following the death of her father.

Initially, she tried to work as a domestic help, but quit the job on not being treated well. She landed up at a children’s home when police found her loitering on city roads.

The headman of the village, this girl hails from, was informed following which police contacted her grandfather and uncle. In theabsence of her parents, she will be handed over to her grandfather, said police.

Police said there have been hurdles in reuniting some children with their parents. The problem arose when police managed to find the addresses of six children who were forced to work as child labourers at a bangle store and rescued with the help of police and NGO. They were subsequently sent to a children’s home.

“Their parents were contacted with the help of local police in Bihar. But they expressed their inability to come as they did not even have the money to travel to Delhi. We have got the details of a local guardian who will be given the custody of the children,” said police.

The Crime Branch’s Anti Human Trafficking Unit has formed five police teams to go about the drive to unite children lodged at children’s homes in the city with their parents.

The teams will visit every child at the 96 children’s homes in Delhi under Delhi government’s Children Welfare Committee and try to extract clues about their families and homes.

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