With the Covid-19 pandemic, a lockdown was necessary but unfortunately, it has also had a very shocking and saddening after-effect: a marked increase in SOS calls to Government helpline for child abuse and violence.
Reportedly, in just 11 days, the helpline received over 92,000 SOS calls for child abuse and violence.
Between March 20-31, CHILDLINE 1098 received over 3 lakh calls, of which 30% were about protection against abuse and violence on children.
As per the National Commission of Women, there has been an increase in domestic violence and complaints of crimes against women as well.
According to reports, child rights bodies wrote to the Prime Minister’s office and asked to make 1098 a toll-free and Covid-19 emergency outreach number under the lockdown.
The lockdown has left vulnerable groups into forced captivity with their abusers, while also leaving them cut-off from the required support (in form of friends or family). It is important that the government intervenes and comes up with adequate steps to help those in need.