16 child workers rescued, five employers arrested

16 child workers rescued, five employers arrested

Survivors: Trafficked from Bihar, UP

Sixteen children, working as bonded labourers, were rescued from north-west Delhi from garment, electrical and shoe making factories on Tuesday. They were employed at units at Nimari Colony in Ashok Vihar.

These children, within the age group of nine to 17 years, were trafficked from Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand on the pretext of education. 

“Five employers have been arrested and the factories are likely to be sealed,” said a police official.

The rescue operation was led by a representative from the district magistrate’s office accompanied by Delhi police, labour department and activists from Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA). Children said they were paid only Rs 50-100 as weekly wages. They used to stitch, embroider garments and make plastic holders in these factories. 

Working for two years

“I have been working for two years now. I used to work from 9 am to 10 pm. I am supposed to be paid Rs 3,000 but I get only Rs 50 per week,” said a 11-year-old child.

R S Chaurasia, chairperson BBA believes that the strict law enforcement in Delhi against child labour and child trafficking will act as a deterrent and end the practice soon.

With the scheme proposed for rehabilitation of victims of child trafficking recently by the Delhi government, these children can hope for some relief from their traumatic past through education and economic assistance.

Placement agencies

The government has submitted a copy of the draft legislation for regulating private placement agencies to the High Court during the hearing of a plea by Bachpan Bachao Andolan, seeking the court’s direction for formulation and implementation of a strong policy to curb trafficking of girls and child workers in the city. 

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