Child labour refers to the exploitation of children through any form of work that deprives children of their childhood, interferes with their ability to attend regular school, and is mentally, physically, socially or morally harmful.
Ninety-one children doing child labour are seeing a new light in life, thanks to the Cyberabad police who rescued them from various workplaces and streets over the last two months. The children were rehabilitated in shelter homes while a few were reunited with their parents.
Till the Cyberabad cops found them, their lives were relegated to the heat and smoke in brick kilns in Shamshabad, or the dust and taunts on the streets as they begged for alms, and in the case of some, to the grime of garbage bins from where they picked plastic waste for a living.
Cyberabad Commissioner VC Sajjanar said that in two cases, the children were rescued from child labour two brick kilns functioning under the Shamshabad police station limits. In one instance, 20 children were rescued by the police from a brick kiln in Kacharam village and in another case, seven children were rescued from Jukal village. Two criminal cases were registered by the Shamshabad police against the employers.
The children in child labour were produced before the child welfare committee and later sent to various shelter homes. Of the total 91 who were rescued, 49 children were from other States, Sajjanar said.
“Children in the shelter homes are regularly sent to schools for education,” officials said, adding that the rescue efforts were part of the special drive ‘Operation Smile’ to rescue children below the age of 14 years from tea stalls, dhabas, religious places, micro industries and other places where they were pushed into work, sometimes under hazardous conditions.
The police have appealed to the public to inform them about instances of child labour over WhatsApp number 7901115474 or via the Dial 100 facility.