Every eight minutes, a child goes missing in India. That’s a staggering and an embarrassing count!
It is 345 minutes for Pakistan and 103 for China.
But the Ghaziabad police in UP has been so effective in tracking down missing children that Home Minister Rajnath Singh ordered the police forces of every state to emulate their method.
Ghaziabad police recovered 227 missing children within 30 days sometime in December last year in an operation they aptly named ‘Operation Smile’.
The Home Minister immediately asked all states to follow suit.
Emulating the Ghaziabad police method, at least eight states rescued over 2500 missing children in the month of January alone.
How Ghaziabad police succeeded in this operation?
Twenty-four teams comprising of over 100 cops underwent special training and were sent to as far as Kolkata and Mumbai to find missing children from Ghaziabad.
The cops found most of the missing children living in shelter homes, bus stands, railway platforms, under flyovers, and religious places.
Some of the missing children were abducted from Ghaziabad, and forced to beg and carry out other such activities in other cities.
The cops reported that many children had willingly left their homes either because of their ill-treatment or because of temporary disenchantment with their parents.
All of them, however, wanted to go back home.
Both the Ghaziabad police and the Home Minister deserve an applause.