Haryana Police has traced 1716 missing children in 2020 and handed them over to their families in different parts of the country.

Giving this information on Tuesday, Haryana Director General of Police (DGP) Manoj Yadava said that among the traced missing children, 771 are boys and 945 are girls. Some of these children had been missing for a long time.

Haryana Police has also tracked and rescued 1189 child beggars and 1941 child labourers during the year. These children were found to be either working in shops or doing odd jobs for their livelihood.

Yadava said that apart from maintaining law and order and curbing crimes during the hard times of a pandemic year, the officers and jawans of Haryana Police also gave priority to tracing and reuniting missing children with their families.

Out of the 1716 missing children, 1433 were traced and reunited with their families by Haryana Police’s field units and the remaining 283 were traced by the specialised Anti-Human Trafficking Units of its State Crime Branch, who were said to have shown “great dedication to this noble cause”.

Explaining the prime objective of this “noble programme”, the DGP said that it was started to prevent child trafficking and save the innocent from persons who tried to engage them in begging and other antisocial behaviours.

Under this programme, police visit public places like bus stands, railway stations and religious places besides institutions such as shelter homes to search for children who might have separated from their parents.

Police also visit shelter homes and make an effort to track down the parents of missing children who are unable to reveal much about their families. “Our personnel screened all the missing children to extract required information from them which helps in reuniting them with their parents,” the DGP said.

Haryana Police is conducting this drive to reunite missing children with the support of child welfare councils, non-government organisations and various departments concerned.

Giving details about district- wise figures, the DGP said that police have been able to trace 213 missing children in Panipat, 50 in Panchkula, 40 in Gurugram, 80 each in Faridabad and Rohtak, 55 in Ambala, 98 in Yamunanagar, 56 in Kurukshetra, 23 in Karnal, 24 in Kaithal, 97 in Sonipat, 45 in Bhiwani, 39 in Jhajjar, 27 in Charkhi Dadri, 86 each in Sirsa and Hisar, 23 in Hansi, 49 in Jind, 41 in Fatehabad, 72 in Rewari, 122 in Palwal, 6 in Narnaul and 16 in Mewat.