The street children are approximately 250 million in the world. This is a problem that also afflicts India, where thousands have never gone to school and are forced to beg or even steal in order to survive. These are young children without families, who often become the victims of unscrupulous adults who use them: they are forced to work as scavengers, shoe shiners, craftsmen and taxi drivers, while others end up in the hands of those trafficking in human beings or in prostitution. Most of them are orphans, others are runaways, and all of them too easily become addicted to drugs, alcohol or gambling.
With regard to child abuse, finally, UNICEF India has announced some data updated to 2011: in the Country, one of every three rape victims is a child, for a total of about 7200 each year; but there could be many more because numerous cases are not reported.
There is a case of violence against children that in the last days has horrified and moved India’s society and the world: a five year old girl was kidnapped for two days, raped and mutilated by a young neighbor in New Delhi. This case was also spoken about by Prime Minister Singh, who after street protests has urged all state agencies to respond firmly to violence against women and children in the country.