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33 kids rescued from factories

New Delhi, August 6. 2013. DHNS: 1:34 IST

Children worked in deplorable conditions

Rohan, an eight-year-old, was at a loss of words when enquired about his family in his native village in Bihar. Tears rolled down his cheeks as he kept repeating his desire to go to his real home. The feeling of loneliness and insecurity was dominant as he tried to reveal what he went through.

Almost every child had a painful story to tell, when 33 boys in the age bracket of seven to 14 years were rescued from shoe and garment manufacturing units in Wazirpur village in north-west Delhi on Tuesday.

These children were rescued in a raid by Delhi Task Force, police, labour department and members of a non-profit organisation Bachpan Bachao Andolan.

These children belong to various districts of Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Bihar.
Sub-divisional magistrate Mani Bhushan Malhotra ordered registration of cases against defaulting employers.

Rohan was made to toil hard for more than 12 hours a day. In a small 10x4 ft room, he worked in a condition of virtual slavery with other child labourers.

He has not seen his family since he was trafficked to the Capital nine months ago. The middleman — he refers to whom as chacha — who belongs to his neighbouring village, paid an advance money to his parents and promised them a better life for him.

Parents deceived

The trafficker deceived his parents into believing that Rohan can earn money in Delhi and can study simultaneously. But in reality the promised dream turned out to be a nightmare of modern-day slavery, where his movements were also restricted by his employers.

Thus compelling him to eat, sleep and work in the same room without being paid any wage for the work.

Kailash Satyarthi, founder of BBA said, “Many major international brands are flourishing at the cost of freedom and education of Indian children and thus destroying their childhood,” he said.

“These brands can not hide behind the excuse of complexity of supply chain management. They are the principal employers and have to have to be booked under appropriate laws. It should be investigated that, for whom these children are really working.”

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