Seventeen school children rescued

Were being used as labourers in a cotton plantation by their teacher

Updated - January 15, 2015 05:59 am IST

Published - January 15, 2015 12:00 am IST - BERHAMPUR:

Seventeen children, who were being used as labourers in a cotton plantation by their teacher in Rayagada district of Odisha, were rescued during a joint raid by the authorities of the Child Welfare Committee (CWC), the police and Childline.

Meanwhile, basing on the complaint of the CWC and Rayagada District Child Protection Officer (DCPO), the education department has suspended the erring teacher, Baburao Himrika. All the rescued children were from an upper primary school at Matikana village under Rayagada block of the district, where Baburao used to serve. They were of 12 to 14 years of age and were studying in classes VI and VII. Out of them 13 were girls and four were boys.

Speaking to The Hindu , the Rayagada DCPO, Ramesh Nayak said during the raid made on Tuesday, all these students were found to be working in the cotton plantation of the teacher Baburao. According to the children, the accused had forced them to bunk classes and work in his field for money. They had been promised Rs.100 per day. Their parents were thinking they were attending school. This teacher was taking these children to his cotton field from the school by an auto-rickshaw at the start of school hours and was getting them back to school in the afternoon.

These children had also not got the promised wage from their teacher although they had worked for at least three days.

The DCPO and the CWC of Rayagada district are not satisfied with the suspension of the teacher. They have demanded strict action against him. The DCPO has written to the State Mass Education Department requesting arrest of Baburao and initiation of strict legal action against him.

Were being used as labourers in a cotton plantation by their teacher

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