More than 1.47 lakh children in India lost one or both of their parents in Covid-19 pandemic
Covid-19 pandemic has brought a cloud of gloom across the world. There has been millions of death across the World and the number continues to rise. In India, as on Jan 16, 2022, Covid-19 deaths are estimated to be 4.86 lakh (official figures) while the total covid-19 cases are 3.74 crore (official figures). According to a report by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) to the Supreme Court, more than 1.4 lakh children have lost their parents/ either of the parents due to Covid-19.
The NCPCR report is based on the deaths from April 1, 2020 till January 11, 2022. The report mentions that 1,47,492 children lost their parents/ either of the parents due to the pandemic. The data used for the report is uploaded on the ‘Baal Swaraj Portal-COVID care by the States/UTs. According to the data, 1,36,910 children lost either parent while 10,094 were orphaned. On the other hand, 488 children were abandoned.
The gender breakdown showed that out of the 1,47,492 children, there are 76,508 boys, 70,980 girls and four transgender, said the commission. The report by commission also highlighted on the current status of shelter of children. Maximum numbers of children (1,25,205) are currently with their single parent, while 11,272 children are with family members. As many as 8,450 children are currently living with their guardians.
It said that the maximum number of children are between the age group of 8 to 13 years (59,010), followed by 14 to 15 years (22,763) and 16 to 18 years (22,626). Around 26,080 children are between four to seven years of age.
The state wise breakdown of the data showed that maximum children were from Odisha (24,405) and Maharashtra (19,623). Other states were Gujarat (14,770), Tamil Nadu (11,014), Uttar Pradesh (9,247), Andhra Pradesh (8,760), Madhya Pradesh (7,340), West Bengal (6,835) Delhi (6,629) and Rajasthan (6,827).
The Commission highlighted on the fact that it was taking proper steps to ensure that children are less adversely affected in the pandemic. The NCPCR has been conducting zone-wise meetings with its state/ UT counterpart (SCPCRs). The commission has scheduled a virtual meeting with North-East states on January 19.