Odisha Labour Directorate and Save the Children organise a special event on world day against child labour at Bhubaneswar Raahgiri on 12th June.
Bhubaneswar: International NGO Save the Children, Labour Directorate and Campaign Against Child Labour (CACL) organised a special event on the 12th of June to commemorate world day against child labour as part of the Raahgiri Diwas in the city.
To address the menace of Child labour, Government of Odisha has taken specific step like development of an Integrated Action Plan to eliminate child labour in convergence with all relevant departments and stakeholders. Many civil society organisations are also working on the issue still Child Labour exists. It is 15th year since the International Labour Organization (ILO) decided to mark 12th June as a World Day Against Child Labour, but the situation in India still have not changed much for those children who are still forced to work as domestic helps, factory labourers, agriculture labourers or at home based work like bidi rolling or incense stick rolling etc.
‘Enforcement of existing law is essential but society has a vital role to play to stop child labour. Children should be given enough space and care to avail their rights. It is a fact that millions of children are denied their constitutional rights, whether it is the Right to (free and compulsory) education, prohibition from forced labour or employment of child labour in hazardous occupation. And we need to change the situation together’ said Prafulla Kumar Mallick, Minister of State (Ind. Charge), Labour and Employees’ State Insurance Department, Govt. of Odisha.
Bhubaneswar Mayor Anant Narayan Jena interacted with the children at the event and asserted that the dream of the smart city is only possibly if we as responsible citizens make and effort together to prevent child labour in any form in our own surroundings and neighbourhood.
Dr. Soumya Kanta Mishra, Assistant Manager, Save the Children said ‘Child labour free India and Odisha is a dream for us and we do believe that it is not impossible. Even after India signed UN CRC in 1989, still the situation is unchanged as India is having the largest number of child labourers in world. In order to make concrete changes in the situation all of us need to come together and address the issues in a collaborative manner.’
A newsletter ‘Sishu Sampad’ developed by the State Labour Institute was also released at the function. 20 children also participated in drawing competition during the event. A puppet show on the issue of child labour was staged by an organization Kandhei Ghara.
Among others present at the function were Bhubaneswar MP Dr. Prasanna Kumar Patasani, MLA (Bhubaneswar North) Priyadarshi Mishra, Dr. B. B. Acharya, SPC-SRC, Labour Directorate, Odisha, Souri Bandhu Kar, General Secretary, AITUC, Odisha, Ms. Sandhyabati Pradhan, Member, Odisha Child Protection Commission, Smt Rajlaxmi Dash of OSCPCR, Shri. Sudhir Sabat, State Convenor CACL. Ms. Moitrayee Mondal, Advocacy, Campaigns and Communication Coordinator, Save the Children anchored the programme.