Chandigarh, Nov 14 (UNI) Punjab Governor and Chandigarh Union Territory Administrator, General (Retd) S F Rodrigues today emphasized the need to launch a mass movement to upgrade the quality of children's care and development.
He was presiding over the State Level Children Day Celebrations at the Punjab Raj Bhawan here.
He impressed upon the members of State and District Child Welfare Councils to expand their endeavour to tackle the problems facing children in society.
Expressing concern over the neglect of children, General Rodrigues said India has made rapid advances in different fields since independence, but little attention has been paid for children care and to ensure them a quality life, good education and healthy environment to grow as confident people.
He said various programmes aiming at uplifting the children were made an integral part of economic and social development plans, but their tardy implementation could not bring about the desired results.
There is a need for holistic and dedicated endeavour at all levels to empower our children and make them useful members of society, he said. Social activists and NGOs must come forward in creating a solid network aiming at improving the lives of the needy children.
General Rodrigues said Punjab has always been in the forefront, in different spheres of life and added ''we must jointly strive to lead the country in the field of child care also''.
He said holy scripture Sri Guru Granth Sahib has a beautiful message to guide us for promoting the cause of the girl child and checking the unethical practice of female foeticide.
''We, therefore, must go to our roots and make sincere efforts to put into practice what Sri Guru Granth Sahib teaches us to create a healthy and harmonious society, with the focus on gender equality'', he said.
General Rodrigues said in Chandigarh, the Administration had created a strong and responsive network and started innovative programmes to tackle the problems of child abuse, checking their exploitation in society and reducing child and maternal mortality rates by institutionalising an effective mechanism.
He said he has already given this programme to the Punjab Government for implementation in the state.
General Rodrigues and Mrs Jean Rodrigues paid floral tributes to Pt Jawaharlal Nehru on his birth anniversary, which coincides with the Children Day celebrations.
They also distribute prizes to children who won in art, culture and painting competitions. General Rodrigues presented a Child bravery award to Mr Ilam Jot Singh of Ludhiana. He released a souvenir brought out by the Child Welfare Council on the occasion.
A colourful cultural programme highlighting the ethos of Punjab Heritage and Malvai giddha were presented on the occasion.