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Addressing Child Safety: YouTube's Response and the Role of NCPCR

  • Published
    16th Jan, 2024
Context

YouTube recently sought additional time from the National Commission For Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) to comply with directives to remove content depicting indecent acts involving mothers and sons.

Background

YouTube's Request for Extension:

  • YouTube, in response to NCPCR's summons on January 10,2024 appealed for more time to adhere to directives aimed at eliminating videos depicting indecent acts involving mothers and sons.
  • The NCPCR had summoned a YouTube official to appear on January 15 and present a list of channels hosting such content.
  • The NCPCR granted YouTube an extension until January 29 to comply with the directives, emphasizing the importance of addressing child safety concerns promptly.

NCPCR's Concerns:

  • The NCPCR highlighted an alarming trend of "Child sexual abuse material" on YouTube, specifically videos portraying potential sexual abuse acts among women and minor children.
  • The commission expressed concerns about the viewership of these videos, including minors.

National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR):

What is NCPCR?

  • The NCPCR is a statutory body constituted under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CPCR) Act, 2005.
  • It operates to protect and promote child rights, overseeing the implementation of crucial acts like the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012, Juvenile Justice Act, 2015, and Right to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009.

Composition of NCPCR:

- Chairperson: A person of eminence with outstanding work for children's welfare, serving for three years or until the age of 65, with a maximum of two terms.

- Members: Six members, including at least two women, each eminent in specific fields related to child welfare, serving for three years or until the age of 60, with a maximum of two terms.

Functions and Responsibilities of NCPCR:

The NCPCR has a broad range of functions, including examining existing safeguards, reporting to the central government, investigating violations of child rights, reviewing policies, and promoting research in child rights. It also has specific mandates under acts like POCSO and RTE.

Powers of NCPCR:

The Commission, while investigating, possesses powers equivalent to a Civil court, allowing it to summon individuals, require document production, and issue commissions. Post-inquiry, it can recommend legal proceedings and approach higher courts for directions.

Initiatives by NCPCR:

NCPCR has undertaken initiatives like the POCSO e-Box, Samvardhan to combat child trafficking, MASI App for monitoring Child Care Institutions, and GHAR - GO Home and Re-Unite portal for restoration and repatriation of children.

Challenges and Limitations:

NCPCR faces challenges such as limited capacity to enforce recommendations, scarce resources, lack of time frames for inquiries, and constraints in addressing all issues affecting children effectively.

Recommendations for Effective Functioning:

To enhance NCPCR's effectiveness, recommendations include increasing funding, strengthening legal powers, raising awareness, enforcing recommendations more effectively, and prioritizing children's participation and empowerment.

State Commission for Protection Of Child Rights:

Each state government establishes a State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, following a structure and composition similar to the NCPCR.

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