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Centre to take stern steps to eradicate child labor: Dattatreya

The Centre on Tuesday said the parents who push their wards into child labour for a second time, will be fined Rs 5,000 and jailed up to 12 months under the proposed Amended Child Labour Act.



New Delhi: The Centre on Tuesday said the parents who push their wards into child labour for a second time, will be fined Rs 5,000 and jailed up to 12 months under the proposed Amended Child Labour Act.

Minister of State for Labour and Employment (Independent Charge) Bandaru Dattatreya said that if a child of up to 14 years, is employed, a fine of Rs 60,000 will be imposed on their employers first.

"Centre is very serious about eradicating child labour from the country. Parents will also be liable for action on second offense. If parents, whose children were rescued from labour, force them to work again, a fine of Rs 5,000 will be imposed on them and they can also be jailed from 6 to 12 months," Dattatreya said at a programme on Child Labour here.

He said that if any person is found to be employing any child of up to 14 years for a second time, he/she will be jailed for two years, adding that Centre is committed to pass the amended Child labour in Parliament.

The Minister added that the purpose of the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2012 is to put a complete ban on child labour till the age of 14. As many as 8.2 million children are employed as child labourers.

The Central government will also launch a massive skill development programme to train children so that they can become productive and proud citizens, he said.

Dattatreya also said that once children become habituated to working as a labourer, it becomes very difficult to educate them.

"In villages, parents have to go out for work leaving behind their children alone at home. There is no one to care of them. If any child started working, it then becomes very difficult to educate them."

Under proposed Amended Child Labour Act, children between 15 and 18 years of age can not be pushed into hazardous occupations.

He added that the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2012 was introduced in the Rajya Sabha in 2012 and is pending before the Standing Committee of the Parliament.  

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