Set up district-level labour cooperative institution: DC
Attributing the rise in the number of child labourers to the poverty in the family, Deputy Commissioner Harsh Gupta has said that there is a need to set up a district-level labour cooperative institution to look into the issue.
Addressing a meeting convened on addressing child labour here on Thursday, Mr. Gupta noted that child labour could be eradicated only by improving the economic condition of parents.
Lamenting that the programmes envisaged by the Government to alleviate poverty was not reaching poor people, he said that failure to implement these programmes was resulting in the increase in number of child labourers.
The need of the hour was to conduct a detailed study on the reasons for increase in the number of child labourers, the facilities extended to them, steps taken to address the issue, and socio-economic conditions of those who have been rescued and rehabilitated, he said.
Pointing to the need to create a mechanism to keep track of child labourers and their parents, Mr. Gupta said that could be achieved by creating new posts at the gram panchayat level. The official could keep track of child labourers and their parents and help them in getting benefits of poverty alleviation programmes, he added.
It was also necessary to appoint a person from a non-governmental organisation (NGO) as a nodal officer. Mr. Gupta lamented that though programmes to eradicate child labour was implemented in the district long ago, the results were not satisfactory. Participation of all sections of society was necessary to eradicate child labour, he said.
He asked authorities to take strict action against those who employed child labourers.
Directing authorities to start working from the gram panchayat level, he said that it was better to address the problem at the grassroots level.
Mr. Gupta directed revenue officials to participate in raids conducted by Labour Department to rescue child labourers and utilise the “Asha Kirana” programme envisaged by the Education Department to rehabilitate rescued children.
Addressing the meeting, Additional Deputy Commissioner C.G. Betsurmath directed the labour authorities to create awareness among the business community on the impact of hiring children aged below 14 and conduct a monthly meeting to assess the situation.
Assistant Commissioner Hunsur Vidyakumari underlined the need to collect data on rescue, rehabilitation and post-rehabilitation of such children.