UNICEF calls for child labour free India

New Delhi, June 13: Drawing attention towards the plight of children employed in various sectors, United Nations Children's Fund Wednesday called for reforms to make the country free of child labour.

In a joint statement issued alongwith National Commission for Protection of Child Rights and International Labour Organisation on the occasion of 'World Day Against Child Labour', UNICEF said poverty was the cause and effect of child labour.

It said that children in domestic work were very vulnerable to exploitation as their work is often hidden from the public eye and they often work far away from home.

"Children migrating alone and with their families are also at increased risks, including child trafficking," the statement said.

"Taking advantage of their vulnerability, the children are trafficked from their villages in rural or tribal areas and taken to the metro cities for work. Stories of the abuse of children in domestic work are too common."

Elimination of child labour is essential for promoting children's right to education, preventing exploitation and ensuring their all-round growth, the statement said.

It is the responsibility of the government, civil society and parents to ensure that children are in schools and not at work.

The statement welcomed the introduction of Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2012.

There must be a roadmap for achieving the ultimate goal of making the country child labour free through progressive legislative and policy reforms as well as program interventions, it added.

The revised National Policy for Children {2013} adopted by the government heralds a policy shift from a welfare-based approach to a rights-based approach towards children, which is in line with India's commitments under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), it said.


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