Haflong: The District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) of Dima Hasao organized an awareness programme on the Child and Adolescent Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act 1986 at the Circuit House on Tuesday. The meeting was to focus attention on the extent of child and adolescent labour and discuss about the existing acts and laws that might be enforced or made aware, for the action and efforts needed to eliminate these practices.
During his speech, Abhijit Bhattacharya, District and Session Judge, who is the chairman of DLSA, spoke at length about various legal aspects involved regarding those who either engage in child or adolescent labour.
Amitabh Rajkhowa, Deputy Commissioner of Dima Hasao, informed as to how their district task force comprising of the members from various other departments and NGOs was working to stop child labour. He urged all the people of the society to be more aware and help them to bring child and adolescent labour to an end. He informed that there was a control room number ‘1098’ that could be used in order to inform or lodge complaint. Not just this, the government also monitors the enforcement of Child Labour Act, coordinates for the rescue of children and adolescents, child tracking system and supervises all the functions through Platform for Effective Enforcement for No Child Labour (PENCIL) portal, pencil.gov.in.
A child is defined as a person who has not attained an age of 14 years whereas adolescent means a person who has completed 14 years of age but yet to complete 18 years. It was informed during the meeting that those children who are rescued are either shifted to the child care homes or sent back to their respective homes.
Sreejith T, Superintendent of Police of Dima Hasao, elaborated as to how their department was also keeping a vigil on such activities involving children below the age of 18 years. He informed that in each of the eight police stations in Dima Hasao, there was a one second officer who was a special juvenile police official for such situations. He also spoke at length about measures that might be taken to stop people from engaging children into labour.