The Bombay High Court Thursday directed the state government to provide data on the number of children in prisons and how many anganwadis have been established across jails for the education of these children. The court also asked the state for details on the amount spent to establish anganwadis over the last two years.
A division bench of Chief justice Manjula Chellur and Justice G S Kulkarni was hearing a few petitions on child labour and the plight of children inside prisons.
Advocate Hiten Venegaonkar, representing the state, informed the court that only four of the 32 prisons had anganwadis. These can be established in a jail only if there are a minimum of five children who are less than five years old. The court suggested that if the requirement of five children was not met, they be sent to a nearby anganwadi.
Senior advocate Mihir Desai said Rs 29.4 crore was allocated in 2015-16 to set up 4,908 anganwadis and Rs 12 crore was released in 2016-17 to establish 2089 anganwadis. The court asked the state for details on how much money was spent from the allocated funds to establish the anganwadis.