Odisha lags far behind AP in migrant labour issue: NCPCR - The New Indian Express

Odisha lags far behind AP in migrant labour issue: NCPCR

Published: 23rd June 2013 11:49 AM

Last Updated: 23rd June 2013 11:49 AM

Member of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) Nina P Naik on Saturday said the condition of Odia migrant labourers as well as their children working in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka is pathetic.

She said Andhra Pradesh has shown tremendous resilience in addressing the problems of migrant children’s issues but Odisha is way behind. She called upon Odisha Government to show proactive approach. Naik, who is in the State, visited stone crushing units at Tapang in Khurda and inspected a National Child Labour Project (NCLP) school in the area on Friday before meeting Chief Secretary BK Patnaik.

Naik said Odisha lacked a proper tracking system as the three departments including Women and Child Development, School and Mass Education and Labour are unable to provide exact information about population of migrant children. With tracking system not in place, monitoring of the welfare measures is not upto mark. Besides, there is no adequate coordination among the departments which results in non-convergence of the services.

On her experience to crusher units at Tapang, she said children there were working under hazardous conditions without access to basic healthcare and sanitation.

“Children were all around the crusher units whose permit status is unknown. The children were mostly from Odisha and some were from Jharkhand,” she said while addressing mediapersons here. Besides, provision of PDS, linking the migrants to NREGS is not happening unlike in Andhra Pradesh, she said.

The NCPCR member also visited a National Child Labour Project school in Tapang area. “I was surprised to find children in the age group of three to five years in the school. While there were so many child labourers working in broad daylight, it is surprising that the NCLP school had hardly any member. The district magistrate of Khurda would be served a notice to explain the issue,” she said.

Naik also met members of the civil society to know the ground reality. The NGO activists told her that the government had no policy document to address the issue of migrant child labourers and one action plan is still in the draft stage since 2009.

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