Techie-Led Team Creates data Bank Of 3L Missing Kids
Today:- Chennai, july – His Muffled laugh is what usually gave ten-year –old S Venkatesan away while playing hide-and seek. On a humid February afternoon in 1988,Krishnan knew something was amiss when even his holler of defeat in the game wasn’t met with the impish smile emerging from behind a wall or the victorious strut. His brother had vanished without a trace from their familiar East Tambaram neighborhood.
For 28 years Krishnan, who is now based in the US has been distributing, uploading and sharing photos of his brother hoping for some leads. It was one such road that led him to an office in Adyar. The trail turned cold, but he discovered a team that had a rich repository of data of missing children and used facial recognition soft ware to track them.
For Close to a year now, Vijay Gannadeshikan, an It Professional, and his team have been surfing various central and state government websites and social networking sites to create a bank of photos of close to three lakh children in the country who have either gone missing or have been found by authorities “If you feed in a photo, our software automatically links it to children show look similar in our database,” said Vijay, showing a photo of a 4-year –old child beggar in Allahabad, with matted curls and dirt-streaked cheeks, which he chanced upon in Face book. The picture matched with another boy in the Central government’s Track Child portal who was reported missing from Haryana by his parents.
At present, the closed application, Facetagr, has helped track more than 100 children in different parts of the country. The team is now in talks with the anti-child trafficking unit here and the directorate of social defiance to incorporate facial recognition in their tracking system. The team is now working on a project to rack the families of around 15,000 children from Nepal who were rescued while being trafficked into India, “We are gibing 15 handsets with the app to volunteers there, “said Vijay.
The Central government has two of facial web portals to register missing children—the “khoya Paya’, or Lost and Found “, a website for public use, and track Child, which allows police, government and charities to coordinate repatriation. Sifting through more than two lakh photos is often Laborious. “And sometimes the children’s spellings may differ in the lost and found pages, so they don’t link,” explained Vijay. In case families don’t have photos, a picture of a sibling can also help the team track the child.
According to the Track Child portal 2.5 lakh children have gone missing from between January 2012 to March 2017- that roughly translates into five children vanishing every hour. It also shows that nearly 73,000 children continue to be missing despite various initiatives, including intensive public awareness campaigns undertaken by the government.