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CHILDLINE 1098 SERVICE » News and Events » Campaigns »
Say No To Child Labour » Child Labour In India

India remains home to the largest number of child labourers in the world. The census found an increase in the number of child labourers from 11.28 million in 1991 to 12.59 million in 2001.

However, many child labourers remain unaccounted for in official statistics.

Child labour is a concrete manifestation of violations of a range of rights of children and is recognised as a serious and enormously complex social problem in India. It is a common sight in India to see children engaged in various forms of work, whether paid or unpaid. Children in rural India form a significant percentage of the child workforce in India. Reflecting the overall trend in the workforce participation, most of the child employment is concentrated in agriculture and allied activities. This sector is followed by the manufacturing sector which account for 16.55 percent of child employment. Trade, hotels and restaurant account for a significant share of child workers with 8.45 per cent of the total child labour force. Most of these children are employed in the informal sectors of the economy on a casual basis with low wages and long hours of work as revealed by many empirical studies on child labour in India.

Despite having legislation against child labour particularly in hazardous industries, children are continued to be engaged in significant numbers in hazardous and non-hazardous sectors. Even with intervention programmes introduced by the government, a magnitude of child labour has increased in absolute terms by about one million between1991 and 2001.

Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act 1986:

As per the census data, the trend on the magnitude of child labour is not uniform across the country. As for the percentage share of child labour across the states, Uttar Pradesh accounts for a larger share of about 15 percent of all child workforces in India followed by Andhra Pradesh, with 10.8 percent. Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar respectively garnered 10, 8.8 and 8 percent of India's child employment.

*Source- Magnitude of child labour in India- an analysis by NCPCR

To read more click here: Child Labour in India.

Click here to read: Child Labour: India's growth story by Nishit Kumar