Children being used by militant, extremist groups: Rijiju

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NEW DELHI, JULY 25: There are reports that some militant or extremist groups in the country, such as the Maoists, Jaish-e-Mohammad and Hizbul Mujahideen, are misusing children to further their agenda, the government said today.

During the Question Hour in Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju however said there were no reports that children were used as human bombs.

In the left-wing extremism affected states like Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Bihar, there were reports that “some groups use children in their nefarious designs to destablise the state”, the minister said.

“We have reports that naxalite groups try to use children,” he said, adding that the government was trying to open schools and carry out skill development activities to bring the children in left wing extremism affected areas to the mainstream.

“As per our information, two other organisations, Jaish-e-Mohammad and Hizbul Mujahideen, have also used children,” Rijiju said.

Independent member Amar Singh wanted to know if children were used as human bombs by some organisations.

The minister said there were no such reports.

In his written reply, the minister said “the government was aware that some militant/extremist groups in the country forcibly induct children as armed cadres and for other supporting activities”.

While replying to supplementary questions, the minister said there was a reference in the United Nations about armed conflicts in India, to which the government has objected.

“There is no armed conflict in India. We have objected to a reference in the UN,” he said.