GULBARGA: A random survey conducted by the National Child Labour Project (NCLP) in November 2011 stated there were 3,280 child labourers below 14 years in Gulbarga district.
Of these, 1,782 work in the hazardous units and 1,498 in non-hazardous ones.
As per the norms, the district administration should take steps to liberate child labourers and prosecute their employers .
The children should be admitted to rehabilitation schools and their parents should be given jobs under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).The survey states that there were 20 child labour rehabilitation schools in the district and each could accommodate 50 children.
Deputy Commissioner of Labour M S Chidananda said that the NCLP survey showed the presence of 3,280 child labourers in the district but in 2011-12, the Labour Department lodged complaints only in 17 cases.
He added that Gulbarga cut a sorry figure in regard to employing labourers under MGNREGA. He told Express that the Labour Department will conduct surprise monthly raids to eradicate child labour. However, he did not comment on the fact that some months the department could not find even one child labourer in each of the seven taluks.
Last December, the Revenue Department conducted raids on cotton farms in Sedam taluka and rescued 16 child labourers while in January 2012, it rescued 17 children from brick making units in Gulbarga. In 2008-09, the Labour Department filed three cases of child labour in the Gulbarga district court, which were dismissed. In 2009-10, the department filed three more cases.
Nobody was convicted but the court imposed fine of `20,000 on two of those cases. In 2010-11, four cases were filed and dismissed.