Operation Smile: 626 children rescued in 11 days

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Cuttack: Scouting different places within the state for last 11 days, joint teams of the Odisha Women and Child Development department and police have rescued at least 626 children, the police said today.

These children were away from their families either working as child labourers or begging at railway stations or bus stands.

This was part of Operation Smile, a programme launched by Union Home Ministry three years ago. Over 900 missing children were rescued and rehabilitated by the state government in 2015.

This year’s programme started on July 24 and would continue till August 24. While the month-long programme would continue in the state, at least ten teams would go to other states to rescue Odia missing children from August 10, said special DG (crime), B K Sharma.

Personnel from WCD and Odisha Police would be part of these teams and were sensitised at an orientation session held at the police headquarters here today, where senior officials educated the team members about the procedures to be adopted for this sensitive exercise.

The teams would leave for different destinations in States like Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telengana, Karnataka, New Delhi, Maharashtra, Haryana, Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhatisgarh and West Bengal to rescue the missing Odia children.

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