NCPCR to track child labourers in mines

NCPCR to track child labourers in mines

The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has decided to launch mapping of the mining areas and vulnerable regions in Rajasthan and other states to find out child labourers working in mines and quarries.

The objective is to evolve a new child labour tracking system with the emphasis on rescue and rehabilitation.

The NCPCR Working Committee on Child Labour in Mines, which met in New Delhi recently to work towards a comprehensive action plan for the abolition of child labour in the mining sector emphasised the need for bringing accountability in the mining industry.

The Working Committee’s newly appointed member and Secretary of Lok Samvad Sansthan, Jaipur, Kalyan Singh Kothari, also attended the meeting. He said here on Friday that some significant suggestions were made for removing discrepancies in authorised and illegal mining and starting pilot projects to end child labour in mining sector.

The Committee felt that children were more often than not pushed into the mine labour force at a very early age, mainly because of high indebtedness and serious health problems of their parents working as mine labourers.

The entire chain of mining operators is said to be responsible for physical, social, psychological and sexual exploitation of children.

NCPCR member Yogesh Dube, Chairman of the Working Group, suggested that a new child labour tracking system could be developed for mines and quarries in view of the hazardous conditions in mines  affecting the children.

Dube called for utilising the RTE Act for the rescue and rehabilitation of child labourers. He said that there is a high  dropout rate of children from schools in the mining belt as they had been sucked into the vicious mine labour market.

The NCPCR has identified some institutions under the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) and the Panchayati Raj, which could be equipped to make interventions in child labour and extend the benefits of welfare schemes to the rescued children.

The Working Committee members would be making field visits to find the regions where this can be done.

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