Special Correspondent

Sequel to raids conducted by department officials

VISAKHAPATNAM: The Vice-Chairman of the State-level Advisory Board on Child Labour, K. Ramalinga Reddy and officials of the labour department detected several cases of child labour during raids conducted on shops and bars in the city on Tuesday.

At a restaurant-cum-bar on the Harbour approach road, Mr. Reddy took a lot of time to convince a small boy K. Nagaraju to resume his studies.

The boy was in tears and shivering when he was asked what he was doing. He was so scared that he wanted to go home immediately. But Mr. Reddy spoke to him for a while and ultimately convinced him to go to school again. Nagaraju ran away from the place after making the promise to Mr. Reddy.

Cases filed

Near Jagadamba junction two boys from Srikakulam district were found engaged in construction work. Parents of one of the boys were labourers in their native place and sent him here along with a contractor. Cases were booked against the contractor.

Near Turner's Choultry, a shopkeeper insisted a boy found in the shop was only managing the shop while his parents were away. The officials told the shopkeeper to prove his statement or face penalty. Another boy working in a nearby shop told Mr. Reddy he was being paid Rs. 900.

Some other cases of child labour were also found in the shops nearby. Mr. Reddy told the officials to book cases against their employers.