Children are future of nation. If we say a child, the image appears to us is like an innocent kid, free from every treachery, knows and recognize only love. We all consider our childhood as the best time of our life. When we were careless and were having all freedom. But if we replace that childhood with child labour, how it will be. An innocent kid, who is illiterate, is in time of development and growth but working for more than normal hours of working allowed for labour. He is being exploited and had only option to live in unhealthy conditions. If future's present is this what it may turn like to become our future. In India, child labour are working in many areas as domestic workers, working at dhabas, working in agriculture fields etc. These children are unable to get a normal childhood and they do not get chance to get educated, moreover these kids get less pay for their work, often beaten up by owner of firm or factory. These kids do not get leaves and anything that comes in labour right or even human rights.
In India there are many reason for this problem, few of those are mentioned here:
- Poverty: Poverty is one of the major reason for child labour. In absence of even two time meal, who would think of providing education or proper childhood. Poor families has to send every member of their family to earn some money.Anyhow they collect to buy the food for the day. So first question among them is their survival, not education or their rights.
-Lack of awareness: Poor people also do not know about their rights and laws for their work. Most of them are working under payment for their work so they send their kids for work. If their child is beaten up or being exploited they do not raise their voice against it because or their unawareness.
-Cruel Business people or owner: Child may be innocent, may be unaware, may be illiterate, but cruel owners are aware that they are doing wrong to those kids. Still for their personal benefit and without paying a thought for children life they beat, abuse, many times even they sale children for other owners. They consider children as their slaves.
-Illiteracy: This is also a reason for this. Uneducated people do not understand the importance of education, They believe that their child also has to do same work what they did and if they can spend their life without education so their child can. Among few people it is like that let have more children as they all will go for work and will earn more. This all is result of illiteracy.
Profoundness of problem
Child labour is much more than it looks superficially, it leads next generation to same problems like working child remain uneducated and unaware of his rights. Whole life they lead in inequality, poverty and helps in population explosion. In absence of awareness, they do not get the benefits of various schemes run by government ministries for them. Problem like illiteracy, exploitation, poverty, inequality etc will remain in our society till we cannot get rid of child labour.
Steps taken by our ministries:
Government has taken this problem seriously and has understood its magnitude. Government formed first committee in 1979. And first National policy on child labour came in 1987. Action plan for this policy was under three heads first strict enforcement of child labour act, second to focus on developmental programmes which may benefit child labour. These are general programmes for poor.And Third, NCLP- National child Labour Project, under this project children were provided with a fix amount of money per month, special schools and training for them. Regular health checks etc were provided under this plan.
Before this plan there was only Indian Factory act was there in which child labour below age of 14 was prohibited.
What more is needed
Programmes and plans running are good but need more implications. It is our duty to provide the right to live his childhood. A healthy child will only produce healthy future for the nation. What we as good citizen can do is we can have open eye on our surrounding, If a child is exploited, take a step there to stop it. If you know any firm or mine where many children are working, then report this to authorities. More can be done by helping them in their education or by telling them about various plans by government for them.
If we dream of a good society with equality, no discrimination, economic frredom, no exploitation, education for all, good aware citizens then we must curb this problem of child labour. Otherwise no other action going to benefit or going to bring desired results.
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