Child Labour is a menace and socio-economic problem that causes hindrance towards the development of the country. Child labour often creates a situation when the children are forced to work when they are expected to study & enjoy the innocence of their adolescent age. In India, most of the population working as labours in the construction sites, tea-shops, etc. are often children. This is an evil practice followed in India where the children are forced to work in very inhuman surroundings and their miseries know no end.
Some of the main factors that have lead to the start of this child labour are as follows:-
• Poverty is one of the main factors that have lead to this child labour because in most of the slum regions of the country there are so many people who die of hunger & poverty. This is lead to an increased gap between the rich & poor which ultimately results in child labour.
• Often the government of the country fails to provide universal education to the child population due to which the children are forced to work at an age when they owe to study and gain education. A child when engaged in the economic activities is deprived of proper education.
• Child labour is often exploiting the children only for financial gains. Often the illiterate parents sign up with bondage with the dealers due to their debts. The children are then forced to work to only provide the basic amenities such as food and clothing to their family.
• The high demand for the unskilled & untrained laborers is often a major cause that leads to child labour. The children are the ones who provide a cheap source of labour and this often is an attractive offer for the greedy employers.
• High illiteracy rate among the rural population is one of the main causes for child labour. These people often do not realize the importance of education and thus force their children to go for work and help in the upkeep of the family. Hence, the children are deprived of basic right of education by their own parents unknowingly.
• The best quality of education is expensive. So, the parents who are in abject poverty are often unable to send their children to schools due to the high cost of education. They cannot afford the high school fees and meet the other expenses of the schools. Therefore, rather than sending them to schools the poor parents are forced to drive their children into child labour.
There are some effects of child labour as well as which can ultimately harm the mental, physical up gradation of the child. Some of the main effects of child labour are as follows:-
• Health problems associated with the child is one of main factor. The children are often bed-ridden and subjected to deadly illnesses due to malnourishment and unhealthy working conditions. The working conditions in the mines are often so unhealthy that the children might get affected to lifetime physical illness. This ultimately leaves a scar over their life that lasts all over their lifetime.
• The child labour also results in creating a mental trauma in the children due to the bad experiences they undergo in their workplaces. Often the children fail to shield themselves from the bullying, sexual exploitation, etc. and hence this creates a bad experience over their lifetime forever.
• Children who are forced to work at an early age are often deprived of education. Thus, it results in lack of education among the early youths of the country. This affects the development of the country because the children can only aspire of big dreams but are often not given chance to pursue their dreams.
The child labour can be reduced and eradicated to a large extent by implementing some of the following measures:-
• Universal & Free education can be provided to the backward & poor classes of the society. This can be a motivating factor for those parents who cannot afford the fees. Free meals can be provided in the schools for those who cannot afford a day’s meal.
• Demand for trained and skilled laborers can be increased in the factories and industries. This can all the more reduce the demand of child laborers and hence the children are given an opportunity to study. More job opportunities can be developed in the work places so that unemployment can be eradicated and thus give a chance to the parents to find means to educate their children.
• Creating awareness among the illiterate folk of the rural areas of the benefits of educating the children through campaigns. The non-governmental organizations can make the rural parents realize the importance of education for the enhancement of the society and can implement compulsory free education in the villages.
Therefore the child labour needs to be stopped and eradicated completely so that the protection of the fundamental rights of the children is ensured. They must be given an opportunity to aspire big dreams of their future. Because these are the youths that can lead to the development of the country and can lead the country reach to greater heights… !!