The Capital has a reputation of swallowing up the young and many are never found. Shocking figures on missing children from Delhi submitted by the ministry of home affairs (MHA) in Lok Sabha recently bolster this notoriety.
According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data that was furnished, nearly 900 girls and 500 boys, all minors, have gone untraced from the Capital between January and July this year.
In fact, a total of 2,179 girls, or about 10 a day, had gone missing, but 1,291 were found. Similarly, of the 1,365 boys who had vanished, 881 were either tracked down or returned on their own.
In all of last year, a total of 1,164 girls and 648 boys had gone missing and their status remained so despite frantic countrywide police investigations.
Importantly, Delhi is leading among all states and union territories over past years in terms of lost children. In 2014, the city recorded 7,136 “unrecovered” children while the larger and more populous Madhya Pradesh stood second at 5,344 with West Bengal third at 3,424.
In 2015 again, Delhi registered the highest number of such children at 6,756 while MP ranked second at 6,675 and West Bengal third at 4,588. Last year, the Capital topped the inglorious list again at 7,665 “untraced” children with MP standing second at 7,140 and Maharashtra third at 5,189.
Gujarat, Rajasthan, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh also fared notoriously bad each year.