THE ERADICATION of child labour from our society seems to be a herculean task at this moment. However, with determined efforts on the part of both Central and state governments along with the help of various national and international societies, it seems that change can be brought about to make everyone believe that children are the treasures for future and they are not born to work; they are born to learn, play and enjoy their childhood.
My focus on this article is based on a related article which appeared in a leading daily - chief highlights are reproduced below along with a few general comments to make people understand better that this single issue, if tackled correctly, can take India’s graph on socio and economic fronts to great dizzy heights.
Some facts on child labour:
India has the largest number of child laborers in the world. Since 1933, various laws have been enacted but the issue exists continuously on larger grounds. According to the National Sample Survey Organisation, nearly 16.4 million Indian children aged 5-14 are engaged in various works while the World Bank puts that figure at 44 million. The Ministry of Labour issued a notification on October 10, 2006, for banning child labour and warns those who choose child labour of imprisonment. But, at present, there is no wider change in the child labour scenario. The livelihood of a child is determined by the socio-economic conditions of the family. A child in a rich family enjoys all privileges, whereas a child born in poor family suffers, indeed, even to enjoy the childhood. Mostly, the child labourers are employed in small-scale industries and for domestic purposes.
The employers adopt children merely because they can be paid less when compared to adult labourers.
Child labourers are treated as slaves and not even as labourers. Most of the studies report that these labourers are in the age group of 8 to 11 and they are made to work 12 hours a day and meagre...
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