From our Correspondent
TINSUKIA, March 27: Despite several legal and developmental initiatives, employment of child labour remains a major challenge in India. In keeping with the Child and Adolescent Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986 which prohibits employment of children below the age of 14 years and the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009, crores of rupees are being spent to elimite child labour. But children from weaker sections continue to get engaged along with their parents by the contractors and middlemen.
In Tinsukia, a huge labour force has been engaged by the contractors in road renovation works, mostly from tea tribe communities. A major chunk comprises girls who have been engaged along with their mothers. These labourers are reportedly brought from non-productive tea gardens like Sukanpukhuri and Kachujan and most of them are currently out of employment. The road contractors, taking advantage of their economic plight, are allegedly exploiting them by giving them low wages. With deadline given by the government to complete all on-going road renovation and construction works before March 31, the contractors, caring little about legal implications, let the poor children do dust and sand-sweeping jobs, thus exposing them to the threat of pulmory diseases.