AN AWARENESS programme on child sexual abuse was conducted by the police for the cadets of the National Cadet Corps (NCC), who are currently participating in an Annual Training Camp (ATC) in Pune. NCC officials said that about 350 cadets participated in the interactive session. The cadets of the 3-Maharashtra Armoured Squadron NCC, Pune, are currently undergoing the ATC, which is considered as a key feature of the NCC training for both the Junior Division, which comprises school students, and Senior Division, which comprises college students.
An official from the NCC Group HQ, Pune, said while the session mainly focussed on the subject of child sexual abuse and their rights and duties in that respect, they also requested the police officers to focus on road safety norms. “The ethos of the NCC training is not just imbibing military values and discipline, but also preparing these young boys and girls to become ideal citizens. Both JD and SD cadets, a total of over 350, attended the session,” he added.
Senior Inspector Ajay Kadam, in-charge of Deccan Gymkhana police station, who along with his team, conducted the session, said, “As part of the various initiatives of the Pune police for students, we regularly hold interactive sessions at schools and college. The cadets in the camp were an ideal target group. We spoke to them about the issue of sexual abuse and the existing legal framework, and what should be done if they face any such situation or come to know about anyone facing it.”
“We spoke to them about the importance of communication with parents and teachers in this regard. The session also focussed on the latest initiative of the Pune Police, ‘Police Kaka’, as part of which police personnel have been assigned to individual schools. We asked the student to have the number of ‘Police Kaka’ written on the first page of their notebooks and contact them in case of issues like harassment, ragging, eve-teasing or other such problems. Other issues discussed were traffic safety norms, perils of underage driving, riding without the helmet and other violations,” he added.
NCC officials said such sessions will be also be conducted in the future, and attempts will be made to replicate the initiative in other units.