Child labour in India
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Young boy stacking plates in Bangalore The problem of child labour exploitation is a major challenge to the progress of developing countries. Children work at the cost of their right to education which leaves them permanently trapped in the poverty cycle, without the education and literacy required for better-paying jobs. This is particularly serious in India as it tops the list with the highest number of child labourers in the world. The 2001 national census of India estimated the total number of child labour, aged 5– 14, to be at 12.6 million. Out of the 12.6 million ,0.12 million engages in hazardous job. However, according to informal labour force statistics, the problem seems to be more severe than reflected. Child labour is estimated to be as large as 60 million in India, as many children are "hidden workers" working in homes or in the underground economy. In the long run, this phenomenon will evolve to be both a social and an economic problem as economic disparities widen between the poor and educationally backward states and that of the faster-growing states. India has the highest number of labourers in the world under 14 years of age. Although the Constitution of India guarantees free and compulsory education to children between the age of 6 to 14 and prohibits employment of children younger than 14 in any hazardous environment, child labour is prevalent in almost all informal sectors of the Indian economy. Companies including Gap, Primark, Monsanto etc. have been criticised for using child labour in either their operations in India or by their suppliers in India.
Child labour, as defined by the International Labour Organization, refers to work that leads to the deprivation of one’s childhood and education opportunities. Effects include a loss of potential and dignity in self, which is harmful to a child’s physical and mental development.
in spite of its rapid economic growth. firms are incentivised to employ children rather than adults due to their cheaper wages. There has been no universally accepted number of bonded child labourers in India. Also. the overall contribution of child labour in developing countries is so substantial that whether it would harm the economy is still under continuous debate. Families generally are also unable to afford their children’s education.
 Consequences of child labour
In general. One example is the textile factory in Delhi where clothes for the International brand “GAP” were manufactured. Though bondage is illegal in India and initiatives have been taken to stop bonded child labours. Bonded child labour is practiced widely across many parts of rural India and across multiple industries. and another around 17300 bonded labourers rehabilitated. Despite having large number of bonded labourers identified.
 Bonded child labour in India
The worst form of child labours would probably be bonded labour. Causes
Many Indian families send their children to work. with some living away from home. keeping up with the large-size family subsistence and inadequate public education infrastructure. The presence of a large number of child labourers is regarded as a serious issue in terms of economic welfare. especially in the low caste and minorities of India. there were only around 1800 bonded labourers being identified and released. little has been achieved. a choice many poor parents will be unable to make without help. there was a lack of will from the government to enforce the acts. a loan or to pay off debts. However. but one estimate in 2000 shows that there were 15 million child labourers who were bonded. there was no data showing how many children labourers are among those being freed. large number of low-paid Child labours
. when children are working. 1986. education and per capita income. 1976 and Child Labour (Prohibition & Regulation) Act. higher efficiency and most importantly.” -BBC news Attending school means forgoing a source of income for the family. Moreover. “Families will have to go without their children's income for several years. India compares very poorly against countries with high level of human development on all indicators such as life expectancy. Many manufacturing firms and sweatshops are strategically located at poverty-stricken areas to attract children to work as labourers. A form of long run employer-slave relationship is formed when these children are tied to this debt bondage to work for their employers for a time period that could be stretched to a lifetime. According to the Ministry of Labour’s figures. very few employers got prosecuted and even fewer got convicted. This is a common problem. It refers to children who are “sold” by their parents for a petty sum. The demand for child labour further aggravates the situation. Reasons are often associated with poverty. and usually it is for a minimal or no wages. Both Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act. between 2000 and 2002 in all of India. they are put apart from the necessary education. absence of union problems. It is evident from India ranking at lowest quarter (122th) in World HDI (Human Development Index) rankings. have done little to help the bonded child labourers as the employers tend to use the loopholes and ambiguity in the act to their advantage. Bonded or not. With profit maximizing objectives.
 Diamond industry
Further information: Child labour in the diamond industry#India In 1997. Child labour in India are employed with the majority (70%) in agricultural and the rest in lowskilled labour-intensive sectors such as sari weaving or as domestic helpers. an India-based management consultancy firm named A. Madhura Swaminathan from the Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research argued that economic growth in Western India was associated with an increase in the number of child workers over the last 15 years and that children work at simple repetitive manual tasks that do not require long years of training or experience in low-paying hazardous works that involves drudgery and forecloses the option of school education for most children. Without education. Pravin Nanavati. there are tremendous economic benefits for developing nations by sending children to school instead of work. The South Gujarat Diamond Workers Association secretary Mohan Dhabuwala. Furthermore. argued that while child labour is highly prevalent in the construction and hotel industries. less than 1% according to their surveys. The ICFTU further claimed that child labour was prospering in the diamond industry in Western India. Ferguson & Co. which require neither formal education nor training. will be part of India’s human capital tomorrow. mainly because of stern punishments and penalties for violation of child labour laws. F. a Surat-based diamond businessman argued that. Child labour undoubtedly results in a trade-off with human capital accumulation.lowers India’s per capita income. since high cost diamonds could easily be lost or broken while cutting or polishing. as child labourers constitute nearly 3% of the total workforce and the percentage of child labourers is as high as 25% in the diamond industry of Surat. there are few child labourers in the diamond industry of Surat. According to the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Their hazardous working condition lowers India’s welfare level too. employing a child labourer would mean risking "lakhs of rupees" and “Around 8-10 years back. At the end of the day. claiming that child labour is highly prevalent in the Indian diamond industry. high illiteracy rate puts long-term economic growth at risk. which emphasized the importance of child labour to the Indian economy. simultaneously it also saw the sharp decline in the state revenue. When the state of Andhra Pradesh reduced the number of child labourers by close to 300. some western countries deliberately created the impression that child labour is prevalent in the Indian diamond industry" and called the boycott for monopolising in the sector. a vital criteria is to have an educated workforce equipped with relevant skills for the needs of the industries. where the majority of the world's diamonds are cut and polished while workers are often paid only a fraction of 1% of the value of the stones they cut. short run numerical GDP growth alone cannot determine overall GDP growth. children do not gain the necessary skills such as English literacy and technical aptitude that will increase their productivity to enable them to secure higher-skilled jobs in future with higher wages that will lift them out of poverty. the International Labour Organization published a report titled Child Labour in the Diamond Industry. The young labourers today.. To keep an economy prospering. Some suggest that child labour is necessary to some extent.000. In 2005. In 1998. commissioned a study titled Child Labour from Gem and Jewellery Industry "to spread
. when indicators like literacy level and health care should be taken into consideration too. as child labour takes large proportion of ‘Economically Active’ population in the developing countries.
Gujarat. They mainly start work in April in preparation for the Hindu festival of Diwali. An estimated 30 people have died in two separate accidents in 2000.
.S." and at GJEPC they. "Some 500 diamond factory owners took an oath in the city of Palanpur. in Surat.
 Silk manufacture
Human Rights Watch estimates that at least 350. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Rajasthan.
In the U. claimed that. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed." 
 Fireworks manufacture
It is estimated that around 135. Children are forced to dip their hands in scalding water to palpate the cocoons and are often paid less than Rs 10 per day.S. (home town of leading Gujarati diamond merchants) not to employ children in their factories. not federal law.awareness about child labor among the people connected with the industry" that is conducted at 663 manufacturing units at 21 different locations at Gujarat. Children work daily for minimal wages. These child workers are usually forced to work after their parents have accepted a cash advance of 1000-5000 rupees. As per Human Rights Watch..000 children work in the Indian fireworks industry.. Similarly. the study is presented in a seminar held by the Gem & Jewelry Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) and the Surat Diamond Association.55% 143 in 1998 to 0.. "while for the synthetic stone industry it is estimated to be twothirds less". Maharashtra. most crimes of violence are covered by state law. The report argued that the use of child labour in India’s diamond processing industry has been reduced from 0. 200 factory owners took the oath. "Remain committed to eradicating child labor from the Indian diamond industry” arguing ". Thirty-five (35) states currently recognize the "unborn child" (the term usually used) or fetus as a homicide victim. not only for moral reasons. in Surat.31% in 2005 which is estimated to be less than 1%. This section does not cite any references or sources. but that a child could be injured while polishing or cutting the diamonds. These laws do not apply to legal induced abortions. The town of Sivakasi in South India is supposed to be the capital of child labour in fireworks manufacture sector. children as young as five years old are employed and work for up to 12 hours a day and six to seven days a week. West Bengal and Tamil Nadu. On 12 February.000 bonded children are employed by the silk industry in India. and 25 of those states apply this principle throughout the period of pre-natal development. Federal and state courts have consistently held that these laws do not contradict the U. Gem& Jewellery Export Promotion Council chairman Bakul Mehta. India. Supreme Court's rulings on abortion.the gem and jewelry industry cannot even think of employing children. and with no firefighting safeguard in factories manufacturing fireworks. as a GJEPC initiative.
state. Western education became ingrained into Indian society with the establishment of the British Raj. California treats the killing of a fetus as homicide. Unlawful abortion may be considered "feticide".
Education for women
Education in India is provided by the public sector as well as the private sector. even if the pregnant woman consents to the abortion.. The various articles of the Indian Constitution provide for education as a fundamental right. South Carolina. India's improved education system is often cited as one of the main contributors to the economic rise of India. 25% of its population is still illiterate. Most universities in India are controlled by the Union or the State Government. crimes in federal jurisdictions. with control and funding coming from three levels: federal. India's post-secondary high schools offer only enough seats for 7%
. which varies from state to state. at any stage of development. Congress enacted and President Bush signed the Unborn Victims of Violence Act. and other special cases. and local. and just 7% graduate. crimes within the military system. As of 2008. Despite growing investment in education. certain acts of terrorism). However. Child education is compulsory. India continues to face stern challenges. For example. but does not treat the killing of an embryo (prior to approximately eight weeks) as homicide. only 15% of Indian students reach high school. Fetal homicide laws are increasingly often used to prosecute pregnant women accused of intentionally or recklessly causing miscarriages or stillbirths. Scientific research has been credited to various public institutions. with some responsibilities lying with the Union and the states having autonomy for others. approximately two-thirds apply the principle throughout the period of pre-natal development. These crimes include some acts that are federal crimes no matter where they occur (e. India has made progress in terms of increasing primary education attendance rate and expanding literacy to approximately two thirds of the population. which recognizes the "child in utero" as a legal victim if he or she is injured or killed during the commission of any of 68 existing federal crimes of violence. Education in India falls under the control of both the Union Government and the states. by construction of the California Supreme Court. one of the first states to pass such a law. The private education market in India is merely 5% although in terms of value is estimated to be worth $40 billion in 2008 and will increase to $68 billion by 2012 . Some other states do not consider the killing of a fetus to be homicide until the fetus has reached quickening or viability. while one-third establish protection at some later stage. who is carried in the womb. The law defines "child in utero" as "a member of the species homo sapiens. The Nalanda University was the oldest university-system of education in the world. has charged only one man who assaulted a pregnant woman under this law." Of the 38 states that recognize fetal homicide.g. while approximately 300 women have been arrested. crimes involving certain federal officials.In 2004. Much of the progress especially in Higher education. According to the organization National Advocates for Pregnant Women.
Institution of Chemical Engineering (India) 3. India's National Policy on Education (NPE) provisioned for an apex body for regulation and development of higher technical education. Indian Institute of Metals
.000. e. The UGC has inter-university centres at a number of locations throughout India to promote common research. Besides there are some British established colleges such as Harcourt Butler Technological Institute situated in Kanpur and King George Medical University situated in Lucknow which are important center of higher education. As of 2011[update]. IIT Roorkee From the first Five Year Plan onwards India's emphasis was to develop a pool of scientifically inclined manpower. and 57% of college professors lack either a master's or PhD degree. However. Several Regional Engineering Colleges(RECs) have been converted into National Institutes of Technology giving them Institutes of National Importance status. the Indian Institutes of Technology. these institutions face shortage of faculty and concerns have been raised over the quality of education. Institution of Electronics and Tele-Communication Engineers (India) 4. 25% of teaching positions nationwide are vacant. which came into being as the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) in 1987 through an act of the Indian parliament.  At the Central(federal) level. plus 1. the National Institutes of Technology and the Indian Institutes of Information Technology are deemed of national importance. In addition to above institutes. Since 2002. the Nuclear Science Centre at the Jawaharlal Nehru University.
Main (Administrative) Building. The Indian Institutes of Technology are among the nation's premier education facilities.000.of India's college-age population.g. there are 1522 degree-granting engineering colleges in India with an annual student intake of 582. Institution of Engineers (India) 2. New Delhi. efforts towards the enhancement of technical education are supplemented by a number of recognized Professional Engineering Societies such as 1.244 polytechnics with an annual intake of 265.
5. Institution of Industrial Engineers (India) 6.
. Institute of Town Planners (India) 7. Indian Institute of Architects that conduct Engineering/Technical Examinations at different levels(Degree and diploma) for working professionals desirous of improving their technical qualifications.