Half of Pakistani children are involved in child labour. Forty-two and point half is the exact figure for child labour in the country. “According to the Federal Bureau of statistics last year, 3.8 million children in the age group of five to 14 years are working in our country out of a total of 40 million children. Fifty percent of these economically active children are in the age group of five to nine years. (Jagirani, 2012)
Fifty-three percent male while forty-six percent female children, instead of going to school are working in the country. The attendance of children in schools at primary level is very low almost forty-four percent remained out of school for child labour.
The children of rural areas of Pakistan are the severe victims of this evil. Only twenty five percent of children in village go to school and the majority seventy five percent is performance labour. Child labour is the main critical core problem of Pakistan that is increasing day by day.
“What is child labour is”?
It is the practices of having children engage in economic activity. On part and full time basis. The practice deprives children of their childhood and is harmful to their physical and mental development.
Reasons behind it..
Poverty: Almost half of the Pakistan children are involved in child labour. It’s the reason behind the diving force for children to support their families at the end of day.
Access to compulsory free education is limited (Expensive): Government should provide almost free education till matriculation. Since the parents cannot afford their later studies. They prefer to put them in menial jobs so that the child can provide back to the family.
Illiteracy rate: Illiteracy rate of previous generation is low means next generation doesn’t get the proper focus (or we could say lack of vision to see for the betterment of their children).
Tradition of making children learn the family skills: The children are forced to follow the footsteps of their parents. From the beginning they are the primary education and are forbid to do any other work.
Failure of Law’s (government): It is the failure of government in practicing the laws to stop the child labour. Results in child labour increasing day by day.
What are the solutions?
- Government efforts.
- The employe children Act,1991.
- The bonded labour education Act 1992.
- Punjab compulsory education Act,1994.
- The government gave free books to primary schools.
- The punjab restriction on employment of children ordinance (2016).
- Individual and combine efforts.
Awareness must be raised so that the parents should pay attention to the education of their children.
Child labour laws should be strictly put into practice in order to get rid of this serious problem as soon as possible.
Government should provide opportunities for illiterate parents to work in industries in order to support their children in future. Like, labour quota in COMSATS institute of information technology for the deserving students as their parents are working industries etc. Donate funds in NGOS working for the rehabilitation of street children.
While the implications of today’s topic may seem grim all hope is not lost. As the child labour is an international issue. And it is evident from the national word day against child labour is 12 JUNE. Child labour is a crime currently happening in our society .We should stop child labour and end this crime. This won’t happen without struggle. Every one of us should say no to child labour. Protect your children as they are the future of Pakistan.