You can’t regulate child labor.
You can’t regulate slavery.
Some things are wrong.- Michael Moore
When a child works a nation is put to shame. India has a dubious character as thousands of children work in dhabas as servers, in houses as domestic helpers, or as baby-sitters. They often are excellent scavengers scrounging through garbage finding wonders in it. According to the ILO, there are 12.9 million (approx.) Indian children in work between the ages of 7-17 years old. The child laborers who at this age must attend schools for their education are found working diligently to earn a penny doing odd jobs or begging at crossroads. It’s because of a common notion- “More working hands, more money earned.” Illiteracy among the people, poverty trends among the people, increasing population, alarming rate of price rise add to some of the causes of child labor.
Article 24 of the Indian Constitution clearly stated that no child below the age of 14 years shall be employed to work in any factory or a hazardous environment up until the year 2016. And so people of India began employing kids to work in households. I have personally seen children of ages 10-15 years cooking; cleaning cars, bikes, scooters; full time babysitting their employer’s kids in several households. However, in the year 2016, an amendment came into being. Government has enacted the Child Labor (Prohibition & Regulation) Amendment Act, 2016. The Amendment Act completely prohibits the employment of children below 14 years. The amendment also prohibits the employment of adolescents in the age group of 14 to 18 years in hazardous occupations and processes and regulates their working conditions where they are not prohibited. The amendment also provides stricter punishment for employers for violation of the Act and making the offence of employing any child or adolescent in contravention of the Act by an employer as cognizable.
If not addressed immediately it will begin to show off its true colors. It will hamper the creativity and innovative skills in the present youth. Not only it ruins the childhood but also snatches away their freedom. The government should target the people at reducing their poverty level and thus decreasing number of child laborers. NGOs ought to take concrete steps in educating the people with the effects of the problem. Not only these organizations but we, the people of India, ought to raise our voice against this virus which has made our country rotten to the core. For one, there is a rule in my house no child will work. Even if maids bring their child sometimes that they will help her in maybe washing the utensils or moping the floors, my mother and I strictly scold the maid to even think about it and never allow them to do so.
As Anees Jung said, “Once the Sahukars, the policemen, the bureaucrats, the politicians, and the middlemen would stop suppressing the lower class people and the backward classes, only then India would be free of this menace.”
Life of little ones are destroyed,
When child labor is employed.
I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.
If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.
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We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.
We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge