Unitedworld School of Law (UWSL), Karnavati University is hosting the Two-day National Seminar on “Child Online Protection” in partnership with UNICEF Gujarat and in collaboration with Cyber Crime Cell, CID, Gujarat Police, Gujarat State Child Protection Society, Department of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of Gujarat, Gujarat State Legal Service Authority (GSLSA), State Project Office, Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan, Government of Gujarat.
The inaugural ceremony was graced by Chief Guest Ms. Foroogh Foyuouzat (Deputy Representative- Programs, UNICEF India), Guest of Honor Dr. Laxmi Bhawani (Chief of Office, UNICEF, Gujarat), Guest of Honor Shri Rajesh Gadhiya (SP, Cyber Crime cell, CID Crime, Gandhinagar), Guest of Honor Mr. Manoj Agarwal ( IAS, Principle Secretary, Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of Gujarat) and Shri V.V. Mondhe (Chief Judicial Magistrate, Project Officer, GSLSA).
The inauguration ceremony was also graced by Prof. (Dr.) Deepak Shishoo (Provost, Karnavati University), who formally welcomed the Chief Guest, all the dignitaries present on the dais and all the resource persons. He thanked all the collaborators for making this event successful.
During the session, eight students ranging from the age group 10-17 years were asked to answer various questions on their perspective about social media and their roles. Questions such as how many times a day they use the phone, how long do their parents or family members use the phone in front of them and what they mostly search online etc. were asked. They were also asked about the reality without digital media, the instances when they thought and felt social media to be uncomfortable etc. The answers were very interestingly given by the eight students and most of them said they use the internet heavily. The audience was astonished to know that even the students below the age of 10 have social media accounts.
They also responded that without social media they feel inconvenient, isolated and incomplete. During the session, they revealed that while using social media they came across various fake accounts, videos that are obscene in nature and advertisements that are mostly age bounded.
Prof.(Dr) K.Jaishankar, Head of the Department of Criminology, Raksha Shakti University, Gujarat and Executive Director, Centre for Cyber Victim Counseling, discussed cyberbullying, stalking, teen sexting, revenge porn, grooming, online gaming and more.
Mr. Vineet Kumar, Cyber Peace Foundation, conversed about online gaming, victimization of children online by adults, offensive behaviour of children online including armature hacking by children and psychological impact.
Dr. Debarati Halder, Professor, UWSL, discussed what is meant by intermediaries, the liability of websites to protect data and confidentiality under different laws including Ss.79 of IT Act, Intermediary guideline Rules, 2018, POCSO Act etc.
Nirali Bhatiya, Cyber Psychologist, spoke about Online gaming, porn and psychological impact of the same on children.
Ms. Karuna Bishnoi, Independent Child Rights, Policy and Development Consultant, talked about reporting of online child safety issues to websites by private stakeholders and the key challenges.
On 23rd June 2019, the National Seminar on ‘Child Online Protection’ organised by UWSL, Karnavati University in partnership with UNICEF, Gujarat saw the progress of first session of Day 2 on UNICEF’s focus on Child Online Safety in India. The session was graced by Ms. Nirmala Pandey, Child Protection Specialist, UNICEF, New Delhi who discussed the Global Polls on Digital Violence and Cyber bullying. She emphasised that through digital technology, online bullying has increased but technology in itself is not creating the problem, it is just a tool. During the session, she conveyed that growing up with technology is a positive move and it can benefit us in many ways. However, we should also learn how we can prevent online violence from happening, how we should be more attentive to our children and how we can provide them a safe online environment. For this, she conveyed that UNICEF has set an inspirational goal of ending violence in and around schools by 2024. She also discussed what risks does the Internet Potentially poses to the children in India and gave the ways by which we can strengthen online child protection. She added that this can be achieved by creating awareness about legislation and policies of Government (POCSO ACT, Juvenile Justice Act) and building a positive narrative about the adoption of digital technology per se, educating parents, caregivers and teachers to communicate and understand their issues.