Berhampur: Twelve minors, working as labourers in various garages, hotels, bars and eateries in and around Chhatrapur in Ganjam district of Odisha, have been rescued.
Officials of district labour office, Chhatrapur, child welfare committee (CWC), Ganjam, child protection unit and campaigners of Childline, Berhampur, along with police conducted raids on various places at Pokadibandh and Chhatrapur and rescued the children yesterday.
While five of them are below 14 years, seven are in the 14-18 year age group, said District Labour Officer (DLO) Venu Gopal Rao. One of the rescued children is from Gajapati district while others are from Ganjam.
The rescued children would be produced before the CWC after proper counselling by campaigners of the Childline. The CWC would then take a call on the children, said district child protection officer S K Sarangi. Now the rescued children are in the custody of Childline.
"We will issue show-cause notice to employers for engaging the minors as labourers. Legal action would be taken against them after they reply to the notice," the DLO said.
Last month, officials and child rights campaigners had rescued 17 children working in different garages and hotels in Berhampur.
State unit convener of NGO Campaign Against Child Labour, Sudhir Sabat has urged the government to formulate an action plan for proper rehabilitation of child labourers.
The rescued children might end up as child labourers again if they are handed over to their parents without proper rehabilitation, Sabat said.