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UNICEF to counsel violence-hit children

By Sanjoy Ray

BAKSA, May 8 � A team of specialized�psychologists of UNICEF will provide psychosocial support to the violence-affected children of Bodoland Territorial Autonomous Districts (BTAD) that has witnessed killing of as many as 17 minors in the span of last one week.

So far 40 persons have been killed in the BTAD violence of which 17 were minors. The latest episode of violence in BTAD saw women and children being targeted in an unprecedented manner. Seven children and two women are still traceless from Nonk Khagrabari village since the day violence broke out in the BTAD.

Functionaries of the UNICEF has established contacts with the Assam State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, a team of which headed by its Chairperson Runumi Gogoi today visited the Baksa relief camp. The camp is currently housing 498 inmates, including 200 children. Of the 200 minors, 86 are below six years of age.

The Commission Chairperson today apprised the Deputy Commissioner of Baksa district Vinod Sesenk about the interest shown by UNICEF.

�The UNICEF people are in touch with us. We can use the expertise of UNICEF team in counseling the violence-hit children. The Commission will be on the job very soon,� Runumi Gogoi told The Assam Tribune after visiting the relief camp.

She said that all the departments concerned, be it the Sarba Siksha Abhijaan or the Health Department, would be written to take necessary measures at the earliest.

The Deputy Commissioner of Baksa has, meanwhile, said that a road map is being prepared to facilitate counseling to the affected minors especially those who had lost their near and dear ones.

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