In India, children’s vulnerabilities and exposure to violations of their rights remain spread and multiple in nature.
These violations are various, ranging from child labour, child trafficking, to commercial sexual exploitation and many other forms of violence and abuse.
Although poverty is often cited as the cause underlying child labour, other factors such as discrimination, social exclusion, as well as the lack of quality education or existing parents’ attitudes and perceptions about child labour and the role and value of education need also to be considered. In states like Bihar, Mizoram, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, 60 per cent or more girls dropped out before completing their five years primary education.
Trafficking of children also continues to be a serious problem in India. The nature and scope of trafficking range from industrial and domestic labour, to forced early marriages and commercial sexual exploitation. Existing studies show that over 40 per cent of women sex workers enter into prostitution before the age of 18 years. Moreover, due to the challenges and complexity posed in creating systematic redressing mechanisms, as well as due to the discrimination surrounding the issue, for children who have been trafficked and rescued opportunities for rehabilitation remain scarce and reintegration process arduous.
While systematic data and information on child protection issues are still not always available, evidence suggests that children in need of special protection belong to communities suffering disadvantage and social exclusion such as scheduled casts and tribes, and the poor. The lack of available services, as well as the gaps persisting in law enforcement and in rehabilitation schemes also constitute a major cause of concern.
Government of India Action On Child Labour
Strengthen National Child Labour Project (NCLP) active across 13 states
Expand coverage of services for sexually exploited children
Expand coverage of services for children of adult sex workers
Reports on child violence
Violence against children in the countries of South Asia