Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) president Priyank Kanoongo alleged that during his visit to the two missionary organisations in the tribal areas of Madhya Pradesh's Dewas district, he found influential people were "involved in the dirty work of converting children." He also alleged that children have learned Christian religious prayers by heart and vowed to take action under the JJ Act and the Madhya Pradesh Freedom of Religion Act, 2021.
Further alleging that children as young as 10 years of age were made to cut grass and even clean toilets on the premises, he vowed that due action would be taken by issuing a notice to the Chief Secretary of the Madhya Pradesh Government.
Informing about his visit to the tribal areas of Dewas district on his official social media account, the NCPCR chief said that he inspected two different institutions that were run by misisonary organisations.
"Today, during my visit to the tribal areas of Dewas district of Madhya Pradesh, I inspected two different institutions, both of which were being run by missionary organisations," he posted on x, roughly translated from Hindi.
The NCPCR is a statutory body established under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005. It is under the administrative control of the Ministry of Women and Child Development. The commission's mandate is to ensure that all laws, policies, programs, and administrative systems conform to the vision of the rights of the child.
According to the definition of the JJ Act, Kanoonga added in his post that children in need of care and protection (CNCP) can be kept in registered children's homes only with the orders of the CWC.
"Here, a blatant violation of this law has been seen as the institutions did not submit the registration documents," he alleged.
"Almost all the children are Hindus; however, the children offer Christian prayers at the institution. The children have learned Christian religious prayers by heart. Innocent children as young as 10 years of age are made to cut grass, sweep and even clean toilets on the premises," he further alleged in his post.
The NCPCR chief alsi alleged that their team has found "evidence" of "foreign funding" for the institution.
"Our team has also found evidence of foreign funding and high political contacts of the institute; it is clear that influential people in the tribal areas are using their influence to do the dirty work of converting innocent children," he added in his post.
"Due action will be taken by issuing a notice to the Chief Secretary of the Madhya Pradesh Government," he further added in his post.
Earlier in November, the child's body issued a notice to the Collector and Superintendent of Police of the Vidisha district to probe allegations that students of a Vidisha school were punished for chanting a religious slogan.
The incident occurred at Bharat Mata Convent School, Ganj Basoda city, in Madhya Pradesh, on November 9.