Imphal, July 16: Amid fresh reports of children gone missing in Manipur, non-governmental organisations today appealed to militants not to recruit kids and urged the government to take steps to prevent such incidents.
The parents of Class VI student Kshetrimayum Suresh, 12, and Class V student Wangkheimayum Sohadeva, 11, said their children were missing from Mayang Imphal in Imphal West district since June 19.
With this, the number of children missing since May has gone up to 12. Only four of them have returned while the rest are believed to be in militant captivity.
As the Okram Ibobi Singh government maintained a silence over the disappearance of children, the women’s committee of the United NGOs Mission (UNM), Manipur, — an apex body of more than 300 NGOs — made 11 recommendations to the government, NGOs, lawyers and militants.
It asked the government to be alert, undertake mass education on child rights, deploy security officers in schools and open trauma counselling centres and child helplines.
It also asked citizen’s groups to be alert, appealed to militants not to recruit children and urged lawyers to initiate steps to protect children.
Committee co-convenor Sobita Mangastabam said the recommendations would be submitted to Ibobi Singh, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Untied Nations.