'Poor RTE enforcement led to rise in school dropouts'

MLA H Vishwanath and child rights activist Niranjan Aradhya at a panel discussion on RTE on Tuesday. DH photo/Ranju P

There is lack of proper implementation of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009, that has resulted in an increase in the number of school dropouts in the state, said Niranjan Aradhya V P, member of the Karnataka Commission for the Protection of Child Rights.

He was speaking on ‘The Role of Right to Education in Abolition of Child Labour Practice’ here on Tuesday.

The education department has itself acknowledged in February that about 69,746 children are out of school. He said Section 4 of the RTE Act that recommends free and compulsory education for all in the age group of six-14 years is not being implemented, Aradhya said.

He said those who are left out of the school end up becoming child labours. The high court’s efforts, which had filed a suo moto PIL to bring these children to school, have not yielded any positive results.

The migrant children are the most affected ones with absolutely no access to education, he said.

Aaradya said there was a need for the government to educate people about child labour laws and to create a common approach to end child labour by bringing different departments, including police, education, rural development, revenue department and others to work together.

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