As parents, we always strive to give our kids the best. Whether it is nutritious food to boost their immunity, outdoor games to keep them fit and healthy, or aptitude books to promote their mental development, we pay close attention to everything. Is this enough to prepare them for the big bad world out there though? Children are the most vulnerable section of society since they’re gullible, impressionable, and defenseless. Differentiating between right and wrong and raising their voice when needed is something that we must teach them responsibly. While we hoist our national flag proudly on Republic Day, do we inform them about our Constitution and their own legal rights? Do they even know that they have them?
Thanks to reporting by activists, journalists, NGOs, social media, parents, and more, we’re now acutely aware of the injustice meted out to innocent, underage children around the world. Closer home, child labour, mental and physical abuse, deprivation of food and primary healthcare, bad hygiene, and drinking water are just some of the clutches that we have to free them from. After all, they’re the future of our country and deserve a fighting chance, yes? Let’s start with our own homes and ensure that our children know their legal rights and when to exercise them.
Basic Legal Rights of children in India
Right to Survival – There’s a place for every child in this world. This includes the right to be born and receive every bare minimum thing to live like food, clothing, and shelter. Also, they must have access to clean drinking water, nutritious food, a safe environment, primary healthcare and be able to live their life with dignity.
Right to Protection – As I said earlier, children are vulnerable and need to be protected from violence, abuse, and neglect. This includes protection both from inside and outside the confines of their homes and is one of the most important legal rights for them to know. Additionally, they must be protected from exposure to alcoholism and substance abuse too.
Right to Participation – Being a child does not mean that they don’t have a say in significant matters. The right to freedom of opinion, expression, and association gives every child an independent voice and allows them to express themselves without fear. This also includes the right to information and participation in decision-making that affects them directly or indirectly. E.g Child custody battle.
Right to Development – Right to education is one of the key points in the right to development. Our government is taking measures to make education accessible to all sections of society but there’s still a lot to be done. Kids, most of all, must know that they have the right to play, learn and develop emotionally, physically, and mentally as well.
Princess Diana, Mr. Kailash Satyarthi, Malala Yousafzai and many others have worked relentlessly over the years for child rights around the world. Their journey has been laden with struggle and staunch determination and has freed and opened learning opportunities for thousands of children. It hence becomes crucial that we make our kids realise their little privileges and gently introduce them to the rampant unfairness around us. Essentially, understanding their legal rights will influence their behaviour and help them respect others’ existence and opinion too. Isn’t that what we need most right now?
This post is part of #CauseAChatter with Blogchatter
© This site A Vibrant Palette is the property of Varsha Bagadia. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Varsha Bagadia and A Vibrant Palette with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.