Nainital: The Uttarakhand High Court on Thursday directed the state government to abolish begging and legislate laws to fight the evil and also human trafficking.
A division bench of justices Rajiv Sharma and Alok Singh asked the state government to conduct DNA test of children accompanying beggars to confirm whether they are their legitimate children or stolen by them and forced into begging.
It also asked the state government to frame laws against human trafficking modelling them upon those laid down by the UNO.
Setting aside the order of a lower court in a human trafficking case in which the offender had been acquitted, the bench convicted him and issued directions to the state government to curb the evil at the grass-roots level and address the issue of human trafficking in general.
The central and local agencies should follow a procedure for proper verification, counter verification identity of children, coming to India from neighbouring Nepal, the division bench said.
The police was asked to invoke provisions of the Money Laundering Act, 2008 and attach the properties of those involved in human trafficking. It also said that legal aid should be provided to the victims of human trafficking.
The central agencies were directed to increase patrolling on the international borders to check the problem, it said.
The state should take preventive measures to check the trafficking of children from Uttarakhand by improving the socio-economic conditions of the areas which are more vulnerable to it.
An SIT should be constituted within four weeks, headed by the SSP to investigate the issue of 'rampant child trafficking', the bench said.
Police was also directed to maintain a photo bank data to trace the missing children.
FIRs in the cases of missing children should be registered promptly and investigated in a time-bound manner, the court said.