Among the rescued children, 2,590 were reunited with parents and 8,630 children sent home, according to the data released by the GRP. From February 1 to 15, at least 1,080 children were rescued as part of the Operation Smile initiative and either reunited with family or sent to a government home for children.
The DGP said there is a dedicated team comprising a sub-inspector and two constables in each of 47 railway police stations (23 in Chennai) to look for children without guardians on railway premises. “The constables work in two shifts to cover the entire day, so children found loitering or begging are immediately rescued,” said the official.
He also said there are 446 women personnel in the railway police which accounts for 30 per cent of the total strength and added their contribution to rescue children is crucial.
Apart from the helpline numbers 1512 and 9962500500 to reach the railway police, the official advised people to make use of ‘Thee’ mobile phone app to report missing children or those found loitering.