Child protection court set up in KP: PHC CJ inaugurates court at Judicial Complex

Child protection court set up in KP: PHC CJ inaugurates court at Judicial Complex

PESHAWAR: The child protection court has been established and it has started hearing cases registered under the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Child Protection and Welfare Act 2010.

Chief Justice of Peshawar High Court (PHC) Waqar Ahmad Seth on Saturday inaugurated the first child protection court established at the Judicial Complex in Peshawar.

The PHC with the assistance of Group Development Pakistan, a non-governmental organisation, and the British High Commission has made arrangements of home-like environment for the children in the child protection court.

The proceedings and atmosphere of the child protection court is different from the other courts as arrangements have been made in two separate rooms equipped with toys and books and colourful paintings on walls to acclimatise them with court environment.

On the first day, the child protection court headed by a female judge Wadeeya Mushtaq Malik heard six cases related to sexual abuse of children.

Talking to reporters, PHC Registrar Khwaja Wajihuddin said the primary role of the court was to protect children from maltreatment, violence, exploitation, abuse and neglect. He said 62 cases of children have been transferred to the court. The PHC registrar said the court has been established under the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Child Protection and Welfare Act 2010 and Juvenile Justice System Act, 2018.

He said under the law the court was bound to decide a case within four months. He said the children appearing in the court would be counselled.

The official said in the first phase, one court was established in Peshawar while more courts would be set up in the second phase at divisional headquarters.

He said the government has been approached about financial implications and provision of basic facilities for the establishment of the courts.

Khwaja Wajihuddin said that Mardan and Abbottabad would soon get one child protection court.

He said the high court had also forwarded a summary for creation of 34 posts of judges for the child protection courts across the province.

Imran Takar, project coordinator of Group Development Pakistan, said they in collaboration with the British High Commission helped impart training to the judicial officers and staff on child rights and related laws.

He said his organisation also provided technical support in documentation, renovation and designing of the court.