Children are viewed as the personification of innocence in a human form. Children are the most pristine manifestations of humanity because they are unaffected by materialistic concerns. It is true that a nation’s fate can be effectively predicted by the state of its women and children. However, when kids are compelled to work and earn a living, their childhood purity, innocence, and morals are taken from them. India, home to the greatest youth population in the world, has one of the oldest and most significant issues with child labour. Despite the fact that the country’s politicians have passed numerous laws, child labour is still pervasive in many places, particularly in rural India.
Child labour is a widespread issue that is not specific to any one nation. The use of children in any type of manual labour is referred to as “child labour.” A “child” is defined as a person under the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986 as someone who is under the age of 14. A child is compelled to labour and provide for his or her family at a young age when they should be expected to develop, enjoy childhood to the fullest, pursue education, and develop strong moral principles.
Article 23 of the Indian Constitution prohibits all forms of forced labour. Article 24 stipulates that no child under the age of 14 may be employed to conduct hazardous employment. Similarly, Article 39 specifies that “the health and vigour of workers, men and women, as well as children’s tender age, are not mistreated.” Similarly, the Child Labour Act (Prohibition and Regulation) 1986 forbids children under the age of 14 from working in hazardous industries or procedures. The Child Labour (Prohibition & Regulation) Amendment Act 2016 outlaws the employment of children under the age of 14 in all occupations and processes, as well as the employment of adolescents (14-18 years) in scheduled hazardous activities and processes.
Children’s participation in the informal economy and home-based jobs is increasing. Children work in agricultural, manual, domestic, and hazardous industries, such as matchbox, rag-picking, brick kilns, beedi-rolling, and so on. The most heinous kinds of child labour entail children being exploited, separated from their families, subjected to dangerous risks and illnesses, and often left to fend for themselves on the streets of major cities at a young age. Slavery, Child Trafficking, Debt Bondage, Serfdom, Forced Labour, and begar are the worst forms of child labour, according to the International Labour Organization.
Education is an essential component as well as one of the most significant tools of social advancement. A country’s growth might be praised or devalued based on its literacy rate. Civil upheaval and other social calamities lead to a shortage of knowledge. Child labour is one of the effects that bring our social behaviour about the country’s destiny into question. Every aspect of civilization, even this one, has been devastated by the worldwide pandemic. Working from home and taking online classes may appeal to a specific demographic. It has been a catastrophe for the remaining impoverished. The situation worsened for the children who had been exposed to the virus, and the struggle for the comfort of the fortunate intensified.
As a diverse country with different civilizations, India conforms to legal boundaries that are equally tolerant of other traditions. Education allows us to make distinctions between good and bad norms. Educational cultures should be regarded as the cornerstone of advancement among distinct civilizations. The research examines all of the various aspects of child labour, as well as the role of education in eradicating it. It is difficult to oppose social taboos without schooling a country’s people, but it is much more difficult to combat social taboos with educated individuals who are not socially conscious.
Importance of Education
Education is the component that contributes to human resource development, which includes a better and more sustainable natural upbringing for everybody. The major goal of the educational system is to give knowledge skills while also transmitting some key values. Economically, the final education package will differ between countries and cultures. In another dimension, it has been observed that the limited number of schools, their absence, the clash of school time and agricultural operations, the cost of schooling, and the limited nature of providing jobs opportunities to enter the labour market facilitate the route of children belonging to the state class. Children are eager to learn, but only with the proper authorization of their owners and parents.
They are particularly concerned about the cost of higher education and other expenses, therefore they want it to be free and close to their house. More than 86 million rural children in the age range of 5-14 years have not been enrolled in the school register, out of 140 million. In rural areas, approximately 62% of children do not attend primary school. Whereas Article 45 (Directive Principles of State Policy) specifies that “the state should attempt to offer” free and obligatory education for all children till the age of 14 years within a period of ten years from the start of this constitution.” However, compulsory schooling for children as an assimilation technique has been proved to be misleading. As a result, the phenomenon of child labour is the result of such apathy toward education. As a result of this disregard for education, the issue of child labour has emerged.
It not only helps children gain vital skills but also allows them to have a respectable life in the future. Education and training are essential drivers of social, economic, and democratic advancement. The elimination of all educational expenditures will result in the education of a huge portion of society. A strategy based on educating children and dragging them out of poverty will lessen the amount of child labour cases we now confront. No one has the ability to reject education as a fundamental right. It helps to change people’s perspectives on life and makes them better people.
Education is a lifelong endeavour. It commences when we are born and concludes when we die. It exists in all societies and takes numerous forms, ranging from the “school of hard knocks,” or learning via experience, to formal institutional learning—from post-industrial to non-industrial communities, rural to metropolitan settings, and young to elder learners. Education fosters critical thinking skills. This is crucial for teaching someone how to utilize intellectuals while making pronouncements and dealing with others. Education enables an individual to achieve basic employment qualifications and increases their chances of obtaining better jobs and a better way of life.
Child labour traps and encompasses them to a life with few prospects. As a result, it is critical to guarantee that every child is safeguarded and not exploited for cheap labour. Education has the potential to transform societies and the planet in general. Education is a strong instrument for making the world a better place to live. Education minimizes societal violence and crime. Teaching people to read has been found to reduce criminal behaviour. The Melissa Institute for Violence Prevention and Treatment, for example, is a non-profit organization that employs education to prevent violence and crime. Education fosters optimism for the future. One of the most profound consequences of education on society is the ability to give individuals hope that they may improve their situation in life.
Suggestions and Conclusion
A range of variables can contribute to poverty, child labour, and unemployment. For all we know, education is not only a solution, but also the most significant component of the formula, and without it, we cannot even contemplate the success sector. Instead, we should go forward and promote awareness about the value of education. Concerning our birthright to equality, it is only through education that we discover the worth of our own rights and have a better grasp of our duties and obligations. Millions of individuals who work as labourers or are compelled to work are unaware that they have the same rights as their employers.
There is simply one constitution that governs all of the country’s residents. No one is unusual in the perceptiveness of law. We can all agree that there are numerous ways to get information, but education provides us with greater power. And no nation can be as prosperous as one in which the majority of its population has access to self-development and self-awareness opportunities. We have not yet found a flawless means to permanently stop child labour since, despite having a remedy in our hands, it still remains. People do not recognize the link when the government implements legislation for the poor, and they do not trust that the government understands what they are going through and their hardships.
As a result, if the government enacts a regulation mandating parents to take their children to school or suffer fines, they will be obliged to comply. They feel they are ruled by a strong organization with conflicting interests, therefore they frequently lie about taking their children to school, often merely to escape a fine. We must promote mutual understanding between provider and receiver, with both sides working toward the same objective, as well as societal progress through education. Absolutely, education is the greatest way to deal with child labour. As an outcome, the government must teach children to evade child labour.
The government should propose measures to assist parents in seeing the benefits of education in their own unique ways. Parents must recognize that they are not required to educate their children, but must do it for their own benefit. Education helps generations grow, and while growth may not be as quick as we would want, it is a continuous and dependable process. A law is only beneficial if it is followed correctly. Rather than the way the government puts out all of the policies for citizens, we should improve the quality of execution. Following the passage of each law, the government should review its execution and implementation to determine how far it has proceeded.
- “A Critical Analysis of Child Labour in India” <A Critical Analysis of Child Labour in India – Free Essay Example – Edubirdie>
- Child Labour laws in India < child labour: all you need to know in Indian context – iPleaders>
This article is written by Devishee Arora, a 4th year B.COM LLB (Hons.) student at Amity Law School, Noida.