Operation ‘Muskan’ succeed in various parts of Ganjam district by recovering children involved as labourers in different garages, hotels and privates companies. It was not the beginning in Ganjam district or in Odisha; as several attempts were made to recover this kind of crisis every year. However, the Govt. and officials of NGOs should find out the root cause and set a permanent system to eradicate child labour completely or partially. It is because; in every raid or attempt lots of children were being trapped and handed over to their relatives; which is not a complete solution or achievement. As children were being diverted or forced to work due to an extreme financial problem of their families; next it may come due to lack of education and support by Govt. or local representatives.
Till date many people from rural, tribal and slums in urban area think that education is not an important factor for their children or for survival. If some could think wise, then they’re unable to execute due to several issues like monetary, health and social impact. Due to which parents may choose labouring as a method of surviving or involving their children to learn and earn something by serving anywhere like hotels, garages, small industries, etc.
Recently Berhampur Police in support of Child Line and Sishu Kalyan Samiti raid and caught 91 child labourers in several places of Ganjam district. For a mean time they’re kept hold in Child Line; later delivered them to their relatives. It is very sad to hear that there was no action taken to protect them from this crisis.
As per the information there are 32 National Child Labour Project Schools are there in Ganjam district. Out of this 8 nos. of NCLP schools are in Berhampur town only. The Government had initiated the National Child Labour Project (NCLP) Scheme in 1988 to rehabilitate working children in 12 child labour endemic districts of the country. NCLP Project begins in Ganjam in the year 1996.
The project societies are required to conduct surveys to identify children working in hazardous occupations and processes. These children will then form the target group for the project society. Of the children identified those in the age-group 5-8 years will have to be mainstreamed directly to formal educational system through the SSA. Working children in the age group of 9- 14 years will have to be rehabilitated through NCLP schools established by the Project Society. However, since last two-year such NCLP schools were closed in Berhampur and there is no official record or list of number of child labourers in the district so far.
“Govt. and NGOs are the organizations/officials created by us to protect child labour with certain rules and regulations. Why depend upon them? It’s everyone's duty and responsible to eradicate and protect such kind of social crisis... be humane and move forward for a complete resolution.”
Thanks! - +Naresh Kumar