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CHILD Protection & Child Rights » V. State Mechanisms » Notable State Policies, Programmes and Legislations » State Plan of Action for Child Protection, Rescue and Rehabilitation (Bihar)


In June 2009, the Bihar State Government has released the 'State Plan of Action for Child Protection, Rescue and Rehabilitation' to address the issues of child labour eradication and rehabilitation. The document recognises that the main causes of child labour are poverty, economic deprivation and illiteracy. At stated in the plan Government's vision is "to make Bihar a 'Child Labour Free State', build an enabling environment for all children attending schools and strive for proper nurturing and overall mental, physical and moral development of every child".

The plan discusses the needs to tackle the problem of child labour at the root. The plan outlines various tasks for each department in the state. The labour department has the largest responsibilities. It is required to conduct child labour surveys, mobilize and create awareness, enforce child labour and trafficking laws, restoration of children labourers, track rehabilitation at village level, sensitize various stakeholders on child labour, putting in place an effective monitoring and tracking system, and conduct studies on child labour issues. The rural development department's task is to ensure the families of child labourers have access to various programmes such as Job Cards under NREGA (persons below the age of 18 are not permitted to work in this programme), Indira Awas Yojana, and Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana as far as possible.

The urban development department is responsible for implementation of Swarn Jayanti Shahri and Rojgar Yojana and Jawaharlal Urban Renewable Mission, to help elevate some of the financial burden and ensure the survival of families. The revenue and land reforms department is accountable for securing the land rights of families of child labourers. The health department is responsible for the health of children. With regard to child labourers and their families the belief is that poverty causes poor health, which in turn needs to leads to low efficiency, which in turn leads to low income, which leads to inadequate nutrition and hence causes further poor health. Children in the work place are exposed to hazardous environments, psychological trauma, infections, etc. It is hence the responsibility of the health department to ensure all children have health cards to access services.

The human resource development department is responsible for making educational services cater to the needs of children working as well as improving the quality of the systems. The Bihar Education Project Council is responsible for mapping child labourers, mobilizing the community to encourage enrolment and retention in schools, the use of residential bridge courses, etc. The welfare departments are to see to the provide shelter and care for child labourers in need through their own schemes. The food and civil supplies department is responsible for distributing ration cards and allowing families access to benefits of Annapurna/ Antyodaya schemes. The plan also outlines the roles of various other stakeholders such as the Bihar Child Labour Commission, UNICEF, NGOs, trade unions, media, etc

Lastly the plan calls for the establishment of task forces at state, district and village/panchayat levels, to steer, supervise, manage, and move forward on the plan. All child labourers will be registered by the task forces.

To download the full text of the plan in Hindi and English click here: Bihar Plan.