“Every child having access to a smart phone or laptop and with access to social media , is a potential victim of online sexual abuse. Perpetrators have no religion, caste, creed or color and no restrictions on place or distance worldwide, having unregulated access possible for any child in any corner of the world. It is a scientific fact, that rehabilitation of a child sex offender is almost impossible and that he or she will repeat the act of abuse at the earliest opportunity. Governments across world have a zero tolerance policy to child sex abuse and have to do their best to co-operate in case of cross border offences. The child sex offender could be already in your home, just a click away, no matter wherever you are living on this globe.

Our children are vulnerable and need protection. We as a society are in dark about a lot of things the younger generation is indulging in . It is an inconvenient truth the most of us do not want to face or address this issue. All recent reports across the world show a steady rise in the number of children being abused online with most disturbing effects such as depression and suicide. Delivery mechanisms of education are heavily relying on technology, encouraging children across the world to spend more time on the internet. A Safe internet is therefore a prerequisite.

Therefore, It is essential for thinkers, social workers and also those engaged in Govt or education systems to understand the extent of the problem, find ways and means of protecting the child and work towards becoming a hostile and an intolerant civil society against child sex abusers.”

Vaishali Bhagwat, Advocate

Cyber Law Expert

About Rotary

Rotary International
Rotary Club of Poona
Rotary Club Poona Downtown
Rotary Club of Pune Pride

Rotary’s Initiative on Online CSE



Creating Awareness Amongst Stakeholders

Rotary’s objective is to create awareness amongst stakeholders in education about online childe sexual exploitation and equip them to prevent and protect children from online child sexual abuse .

Online and Offline sexual exploitation and abuse of children is the most dark reality of modern life which is not getting acknowledged by society in India for various reasons. It could be lack of information and awareness, taboo of the subject in general or is merely brushed under the carpet as it is an uncomfortable truth to face. As per a report in the Economic times on 14th July 2014, about 400 cases have been registered relating to sexual exploitation of children under the Protection of Children against Sexual Offences Act 2012 ( POCSO Act ).

As use of internet spreads widely and has reached almost every household , it is now imperative for Parents, Teachers, School Authorities, Police , NGOs and Other care givers to understand this menace of online child sexual exploitation that is silently having a devastating effect on our children.McAfee, part of Intel Security, has  released findings of its annual study, the Tweens, Teens and Technology 2014 report, which examines the online behaviour and social networking habits of Indian tweens and teens. According to the research, two-thirds (66%) of youth in India have had some experience with cyber-bullying.36% of youth having been cyber bullied themselves. Of those who responded they were cyber bullied, 46% responded it was due to appearance while 45% answered due to their intelligence level. 40% stated religion/race was the driving factor. While the study reveals cyber bullying continues to represent a serious problem for youth, the 2014 survey found 57% of youth would not know what to do if they were harassed or bullied online.

The objectives of the awareness programs

  • Understand types of abuse
  • Who are Child sex offenders
  • Online and offline child sexual exploitation
  • Social media and young people – merits and demerits
  • Young people’s vulnerabilities online
  • Empower children and young people to stay safe

The awareness programs are meant for anyone working directly with children and not limited to

  • Teachers
  • School Counsellors
  • School Authorities
  • Police
  • NGOs
  • Care givers
  • Members of Parents- Teachers Association

TOT – Training of Trainers

Our knowledge partners will conduct training programs for train the trainer after completion of which the trainer will be equipped to conduct awareness programs for stakeholders by using educational resources provided by the knowledge partners. To know more Contact Us .

Rotary International with its wide network of Rotary Clubs, Rotaract Clubs and Interact Clubs have access to stakeholders in education and can conduct awareness programs or TOT with support from our knowledge partners or local experts. Standardized content or framework content is available with us which can be modified with the help of local experts to suit the audience. To know more Contact Us.

Events

Keeping children safe online

Rotary club international organized a one day awareness program for teachers, students and councellors on the topic 'keeping children safe online'.
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investment-stage
investment-areas

Awareness program on Online CSE 2016

One Day awareness program for stakeholders in education on online Child Sexual Abuse 16th July 2016 at Pune.

Breakout session at RI convention , SEOUL

Breakout session at Rotary International Convention on 31 st May 2016 at Seoul, S. Korea

Awareness program on Online CSE 2015

The UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA)’s Child Exploitation Online Protection (CEOP)...

Our Partners



Connect with Us

  • As a Rotary Club
    You can partner with us to organize awareness programs and Training of Trainer programs . To know more Contact Us
  • Register for a Event
  • As a Donor
    You can sponsor an awareness program , Training of Trainer Program , Training material and educational resources including educational videos , games , etc . All donations are exempt from Tax. Cheques to be drawn in the name of Rotary clun of Pune Pride Charitable Trust . To know more Contact Us
  • As a Volunteer

Meet the Team

Advisors

Subodh
Subodh Joshi

District Governor (15-16)
Rotary District 3131

Prashant
Prashant Deshmukh

District Governor Elect
Rotary District 3131

Deepak
Dr Deepak Shikarpur

District Trainer and DRFC
Rotary District 3131

Participating Rotary Clubs

DV Taneja
Rtn. Rear Admiral DV Taneja, VSM (Retd)

PE Rotary Club Poona

DV Taneja
Rtn. Pallavi Sable

PE Rotary Club Poona Downtown

DV Taneja
Rtn. Avinash Joag

PE Rotary Club Pune Pride

Core Committee

Vaishali
PP Vaishali Bhagwat

DLCC ( 16-17)

Deepak
PP Yezdi Batliwala

Rotary Club of Poona Downtown

Deepak
Vrinda Walimbe
Parag Mulye
Parag Mulye
Deepak
Rajesh Bahl

Volunteers

Shefali Agarwal
Shefali Agarwal
PJ Masters
PHIROZE J. MASTERS
Maithili Manakawad
Maithili Manakawad

Knowledge Bank

Safeguarding Children from Online Sexual Abuse

The Associated Chambers of Commerce & Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) conducted a survey in 2014 in metropolitan cities (8-13 years) wherein 73% minors where found to be facebook users despite of the age-restriction of 13 years. McAfee Tweens, Teens & Technology Study (2014) was conducted across metro cities in India (8-17 years) wherein it was found that 61% of youth think that their parents can't keep up with them when it comes to technology. To add more, 64% of young people still manage to hide their online behaviours from their parents and 62% would still change their online behaviour if they knew their parents were watching. Moreover, 52% children shared that, their parents simply don’t care about online activity.

Are these statistics alarming ? Or is it ok to let our children use the internet without any supervision , intervention or control ? Are our children safe online ? Are we aware of the threats or risks our children get exposed when they are online ? Or is it just one more thing that we as parents have no control over !

Let first take a quick look of the threats and risks our children face online. It can be summarized in 3 C’s. Content, Contact and Conduct

Content risks: The child or young person is exposed to harmful material, where the child is only a recipient. Content risks arises out of harmful material such as illegal content, harmful content or harmful advise. For eg: sexual content, child abuse images, racist content, pro-suicidal sites and inaccurate or misleading content

Contact risks: The child or young person participates perhaps unknowingly or unwittingly in adult initiated online activity; Contact risks can be Cyber grooming, online harassment, cyber bullying, illegal interactions, problematic content sharing or threatening or intimidating communication.

Conduct risks: The child or young person is a perpetrator or victim in peer-to-peer exchange;Conduct risks are when the child engages in hostile peer actitvity, cyber bullying , flaming or trolling, sexual harassment or creating and uploading inappropriate content.

Online behavior of children exposes them to these risks such as over-sharing. Many children share details such as address, contact details and private information online with unknown people (virtual friends). Moreover, children also share their personal photos or videos on social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. without paying heed at the privacy settings. McAfee Study state that; 92% children have posted something risky online. 70% children have posted their personal information like e-mail address, contact number or home address 55% tweens and teens believe Online Identity theft does not apply to them. 51% claimed that they do not care about privacy settings.

The same study results came up with the fact that 53% children have met someone in person who was met online. This shows that kids may not realize the fact that, connecting to unknown people online has high risks, as people may create a fake profile and pretend something different than who they are. Can you remember the famous cartoon with the slogan “On the internet, nobody knows you are a dog!” by Peter Steiner in 1993 in “The New Yorker”? It is still relevant !

Children also are likely to easily fall prey to those popups where you get a message like “you have won $100000”, “Win a Lap-top. Click here.” etc. while they are playing games or surfing online. Moreover, they may also respond to the mails wherein they have been told to win a lucky draw and there are chances that kids provide the personal information that is asked. Another financial pitfall is online gambling which is prohibited by the law in India. Additionally, they may fall prey risks related online shopping from fake sites.

A study by Microsoft (2012) on online bullying in the age-group 8-18 years revealed that 53% children have been subjected activities which can be considered online bullying. On the similar lines, McAfee Study reports 50% youth being cyber-bullied online.

Internet dependence is another major factor exposing children to cyber risks. McAfee Study which reports 70% spend more than 5 hours on the Internet daily. The National Institute of Mental and Neurosciences (NIMHANS) Bangalore study (2014) reports that 73% of teenagers in urban India are affected by “psychiatric distress” and overuse of technology has been cited as one of the major reasons.

So what can we do ?

Some Suggestions :

  • Monitor children’s internet screen time (time spent on variety of gadgets for the Internet)
  • Decide rules regarding number of hours, acceptable sites, taking permissions etc.
  • Use locks and passwords for your phone, i-pads so that children can access them only when you want them to and when you can monitor them.
  • Monitor children’s access to internet- websites, social networking sites etc.
  • Learn the trends of social networking and the privacy settings of respective sites.
  • Parental controls like software, applications may be used as well.
  • Use appropriate anti-virus software and use filtering settings, so that unwanted material would not pop-up when child is using the device.
  • Teach kids about online safety- Have discussions, show resources and make clear rules about online presence
  • Talk to kids about online threats like cyber-bullying, Cyber-stalking, online abuse etc. in child friendly and age-appropriate manner and teach them how to be safe.


The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (POCSO)

  • For the first time, a special law has been passed to address the issue of sexual offences against children.
  • Earlier there was no distinction between an adult and a child victim.
  • The offences have been clearly defined for the first time in law such as the offences of sexual assault, sexual harassment and pornography
  • The Act has come into force with effect from 14th November, 2012 along with the Rules framed there-under.


The most important provisions of the Act

  • Definition of the Child
  • Definition of different forms of sexual abuse, including penetrative and non-penetrative assault and what constitutes to be “aggravated” sexual assault
  • The prescribed punishments under the relevant sections
  • Sexual assault by a group and the relevant punishment
  • The mandatory reporting of the crime
  • The abetment of an offence under the Act would also attract the same punishment as that of the offence committed
  • There are designated Special Courts for the trial of the cases
  • The Police have the responsibility of making urgent arrangements for the care and protection of the child
  • The attempt to commit an offence under the Act has been made liable for punishment
  • The Act is gender-neutral and defines a child as any person below the age of eighteen years, i.e. be it either a girl or a boy
  • The Act provides for stringent punishment graded as per the gravity of the offence, with a maximum term of rigorous imprisonment for life for certain offences, and fine.
  • The Act provides for child-friendly procedures for reporting of offences, recording of evidence, investigation and trial.
  • The rules framed under the Act provide for qualifications and experience of interpreters, translators, special educators, and experts; arrangements for care and protection and emergency medical treatment of the child; compensation payable to a child who has been the victim of a sexual offence;
  • The compensation may be awarded at the interim stage as well as upon completion of trial.
  • The rules also lay down criteria for award of compensation by the Special Court, which includes the gravity of the offence; loss of educational opportunity or employment as a result of the offence; and disability, disease or pregnancy suffered as a consequence of the offence.
  • Penetrative and aggravated penetrative sexual assault, sexual and aggravated sexual assault, sexual harassment, and using a child for pornographic purposes are the five offences against children that are covered by this act.

Special Features of the Act

  • New offences / Special Courts / Special Public Prosecutor
  • Mandatory Reporting / Punishment for False Reporting
  • Special Procedures: recording of complaint, statements & Evidence
  • This act suggests that any person, who has an apprehension that an offence is likely to be committed or has knowledge that an offence has been committed, has a mandatory obligation to report the matter i.e. media personnel, staff of hotel/ lodges, hospitals, clubs, studios, or photographic facilities
  • It is now mandatory for police to register an FIR in all cases of child abuse and should be preferably done by a female police officer not below the rank of sub-inspector.
  • The Investigating Officer has to get the child medically examined in a government hospital or local hospital within 24 hours of receiving information about the offence with the consent of the child or parent.
  • Any personal belonging to the media, studio, photographic facility, hotel, lodge or by whatever name called, should provide the information , on coming to know about the object or material known to be sexually exploitative of the child, to the Special Juvenile Police Unit (SJPU) or local police
  • Failure to report or record the commission of the offence would be punishable with six months imprisonment or fine or with both.
  • Sec 21: Any person in-charge of a company or institution or by whatever name called, fails to report, in respect of a subordinate under his control, would be punished with imprisonment with one year and with fine
  • False complaint by a child is not punishable

Some of the child-friendly procedures which are envisaged under the POCSO Act are as follows

  • At night no child to be detained in the police station.
  • The statement of the child to be recorded as spoken by the child.
  • Frequent breaks for the child during trial.
  • Child not to be called repeatedly to testify.
  • Police officer to not be in uniform while recording the statement of the child
  • In-camera trial of cases
  • The media has been barred from disclosing the identity of the child without the permission of the special court. The punishment for breaching this provision by media may be from six months to one year.
  • For speedy trial, the evidence of the child is to be recorded within a period of 30 days. Also, the Special Court is to complete the trial within one year.

Offences under POCSO

  • Penetrative Sexual Assault (Sec. 3)
  • Aggravated Penetrative Sexual Assault (Sec. 5)
  • Sexual Assault (Sec. 7)
  • Aggravated Sexual Assault (Sec. 9)
  • Sexual Harassment ( Sec. 11)

Punishments for Offences covered in the Act are

  • Penetrative Sexual Assault (Section 3) - Not less than seven years which may extend to imprisonment for life, and fine (Section 4)
  • Aggravated Penetrative Sexual Assault (Section 5) - Not less than ten years which may extend to imprisonment for life, and fine (Section 6)
  • Sexual Assault (Section 7) - Not less than three years which may extend to five years, and fine (Section 8)
  • Aggravated Sexual Assault (Section 9) - Not less than five years which may extend to seven years, and fine (Section 10)
  • Sexual Harassment of the Child (Section 11) - Three years and fine (Section 12)
  • Use of Child for Pornographic Purposes (Section 13) - Five years and fine and in the event of subsequent conviction, seven years and fine (Section 14 (1))

Procedure for reporting the case

  • Section 19: Mandatory reporting including even by the child concerned to the SJPU or Local police
  • Report to CWC and Special Court/ Sessions court
  • Section 21: Punishment for failure to Report
  • Section 22: Punishment for False Complaint
  • Section 23: Procedure for media
  • Any person who has an apprehension that an offence of sexual abuse is likely to be committed or knows that the offence has been committed should provide the information to the Special Juvenile Police Unit (SJPU) or local police
  • The police or the Special Juvenile Police Unit (SJPU) should make immediate arrangements to give the child, care and protection
  • They should report the matter to the Child Welfare Committee within 24 hours of recording the complaint
  • Steps should be taken to admit the child into shelter home or to the nearest hospital within twenty-four hours of the report
  • No person shall incur the liability either civil or criminal for reporting the commission of the offence

Definition of Sexual Assault

  • Sec 7: Whoever with the bad intention
  • touches the private parts of a child,
  • be it a male or a female child,
  • or makes the child to do so
  • or does any act with a sexual intent
  • And which involves physical contact without penetration is said to be committing Sexual Assault
  • Punishment being not less than 3 years or may also extend to 5 years with or without fine
  • Sec 9: “Aggravated Sexual Assault” means sexual assault committed by any police officer, armed forces, public servant, manager of a hospital or an institution on a child
  • Sec 11: When any person with a sexual intent utters a word or makes any sound or gesture or displays or exposes any part of the body, with an intention that the child would hear the sound or sees the part of the body is said to commit the offence of Sexual Harassment
  • Even showing of any porn film with any sexual intention too is an offence
  • Using a child for pornographic purposes is also an offence punishable under the Act
  • Sec 16: Instigation or facilitation or by wilful misrepresentation or by wilful concealment of a material fact, of a child to do an act with a sexual intention is also the abetment of the offence of sexual abuse
Name Topic Download
Rohit Srivastwa Cyber Safe Parenting Click here...
Debasish Pramanik Tracing The Offender Click here...

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