Twelve child labourers aged between 13 and 16 years were rescued in a massive drive that was jointly conducted by officials from the Labour Department, Childline 1098, National Child Labour Project (NCLP), Anti Trafficking Police and health department from the lorry body building and workshops in and around Namakkal Town on Thursday. The children were rescued based on information received by the Collector and Namakkal Childline 1098. “During the raid we found the children employed in hazardous industrial units where they were working in auto, aluminium, and lathe and electrical works in units located on the Tiruchengode Road, Tiruchi Road and Salem Road. Four children were 13 and 14 years while five were 15 years while three others were 16,” Childine personnel who were present during the raid said. The children were produced before the District Collector D. Jagannathan, under whose direction they were produced before the District Child Welfare Committee (CWC) to rehabilitate the children. According to Childline officials, children aged below 18 years are treated as children – as mentioned in the will be Juvenile Justice Act, 2000, that was amended in 2006. “Those who are aged below 14 will be admitted in special schools for rescued child labourers by the CWC where as those aged between 15 and 18 will be rehabilitated by Childine,” the official added. Officials who were part of the team that conducted the raid were Labour Inspector S. Abdul Ajeesh, Assistant Labour Inspector M. Kalavathi, and doctor from the health department.

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