Children of the world are innocent, vulnerable and dependent. They are all curious, active and full of hope. Their life should be full of joy and peace, playing, learning and growing. Their future should be shaped in harmony and co-operation. Their childhood should mature, as they broaden their perspectives and gain new experience. Abandoning the children, excluding good foundation of life for them, is a crime against humanity.
The children cannot wait till tomorrow; they grow every day; along with them grows their sense of awareness about the surroundings. Tomorrows is no answer; the goal of their present care, protection and rehabilitation is the need of the hour.
The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of the Child made on November 20, 1959, has formulated and given 10 principles in that behalf.
- Principle No.1 provides that the child shall enjoy all the rights set forth in the Declaration. All children, without any exception whatsoever, shall be entitled to these rights, without distinction or discrimination on account of race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status, whether himself or of his family.
- Principle No.2 postulates that the child shall enjoy special protection, and shall be given opportunities and facilities, by law and by other means to enable him to develop physically, mentally, morally, spiritually and socially in a healthy and normal manner and in conditions of freedom and dignity.
- Principle No.3 postulates that the child shall be entitled from his birth to name and a nationality.
- Principle No.4 postulates among other things that the child shall enjoy the benefits of the social security. He shall be entitled to grow and develop in health; to this end, special cafe and protection shall be provided to him.
- Principle No.5 provides that the child who is physically, mentally or socially handicapped shall be given special treatment, education and care required by that particular condition.
- Principle 6 postulates that the child for the full and harmonious development of his personality, needs, love and understanding. A child of tender years shall not, save in exceptional circumstance. be separated from his/her mother. Society and the public authorities shall have the duty to extend particular care to children without a family and to those without adequate means of support. Payment of State and other assistance towards the maintenance of children of large families is desirable.
- Principle No.7 provides that the child is entitled to receive education, which shall be free and compulsory, at least in the elementary stages. He/She shall be given an education which will promote his/her general culture, and enable him/her on a basis of equal opportunity to develop his/her abilities, his/her individual judgment, and his/her sense of moral and social responsibility and to become a useful member of the society.
The best interests of the child shall be the guiding principle of those responsible for his education and guidance, that responsibility lies in the first place with his parents. The child shall have full opportunity for play and recreation, which should be directed to the same purpose as education; society; and the public authorities shall endeavour to promote the enjoyment of this right.
- Principle No.8 postulates that the child shall in all circumstances be among the first to receive protection and relief.
- Principle 9 is most important in his behalf which provides that the child important in this behalf which provides that the child shall be protected against all forms of neglect, rudely and exploitation. He shall not be the subject of traffic, in any form. The child shall not be admitted to employment before an appropriate minimum age; he shall in no case be caused or permitted to engage in any occupation or employment which would prejudice his health or health or education, or interfere with his physical, mental development.
- Principle No.10 postulates that the child shall be protected from practices which may foster racial, religious and any other form of discrimination. He shall be brought up in a spirit of understanding, tolerance. friendship among peoples, peace and universal brotherhood and in full consciousness that his energy and fallates should be devoted to the service of his fellow men.