GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
MINISTRY OF WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT
UN STARRED QUESTION NO. 2076
TO BE ANSWERED ON 04.01.2018
PHENOMENON OF ONLINE GROOMING
2076. SHRI RAJEEV CHANDRASEKHAR:
Will the Minister of WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT be pleased to state:
(a) whether the phenomenon of ‘online grooming’ of children occur over the internet where a groomer befriends and forms an emotional bond with the objective of sexual abuse;
(b) whether a UNICEF report highlighted the inefficacy of Indian laws to protect children from online abuse including grooming, limitation in the law include lack of clear-cut and uniform terminology in legislations, risk of subjective interpretation of legal provisions and absence of any legal duty on intermediaries (ISPs); and
(c) whether the Ministry has enacted clear provisions in this regard, if so, the details thereof, if not, the reasons therefor?
MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF WOMEN AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT
(DR. VIRENDRA KUMAR)
(a) to (c) No such study report has come to the notice of the Ministry of Women and Child Development to establish the same. However, in the wake of such purported instances through media recently impacting young children, Ministry took up the matter with Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology at the level of Minister and Secretary to take necessary interventions to curb the menace and to ensure the safety and security of children. In order to equip children in negotiating the online world with adequate safety, Ministry of Human Resource Development was requested to issue necessary directions to Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) for incorporating suitable content pertaining to cyber safety in the school curriculum of children and advise State Governments to do the same through their School Boards. The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, contains effective provisions to curb the menace of child abuse. The Act provides mandatory reporting, child friendly provisions of recording of statement and evidence and speedy trial of the cases. There are adequate legal penal provisions including POCSO Act, 2012 for the sexual offences against the children, as per the gravity of offences.