India continues to host the largest number of child labourers in the world, with more than half of Delhi's working children forced to work for over eight hours a day without a single day's rest. This was found in a survey done and released in New Delhi on Wednesday by child rights non-government organisation Child Rights and You (CRY) in partnership with Philips. The survey, which was released on the closing of CRY's Click Rights Campaign , is an attempt to open the eyes of the citizens to the grim reality of child labour.
To substantiate the same, a rapid assessment of knowledge, attitude and practices of 300 employers of child labourers in the unorganised sector was conducted. The findings point to apathy, absence of any form of regulation and illiteracy among the employers themselves. Also, through photos clicked by CRY volunteers, interns, eminent photographers and most interestingly working children themselves, the survey has tried to take stock of and find out where we stand as a country after having made a commitment to progressively eliminate child labour about a quarter of a century ago.
Speaking about the survey, CRY regional director (north) Soha Moitra said: This is a vicious cycle where employers themselves are illiterate and have, at some point, been child labourers themselves. The lack of education forces them into the unorganised sector, which is unregulated and exploitative. Children, the most vulnerable segment, are the ones who are the worst hit by this as they can work long hours, at a very low cost and have absolutely no safety nets, she added.