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Child Labour in India

Posted by on Jan 21, 2018 in article | 0 comments

Child Labour in India

The International Labour Corporation estimates that there are 218 child labourers on earth (ILO, 2006). In 1991, there have been approximately 11.3 million kid labourers in India, with 2 million of these children employed in highly dangerous circumstances (2004). However, as of late 2000 the ILO states there are now 10.4 million kid labourers in India. It important to stress these children are working because they don’t have a decision, Mummun Jha argues extra especially that, “they come not from the well-away households but from marginalized sections that are already the hardest hit, including the children of the poor, the lower castes, and the female” (2009, p. 217). In India, there are a variety of complex public and economic factors for why children are working. These reasons range from: too little usage of education and unemployed parents (Venkatanarayana, 2004). Generally, poverty is reported to be the cause of kid labour, yet it can also be due to child labour as well. Zubair Kabir argues that a cycle of poverty can can be found within child labour and India is certainly no exception (2003). Hence, this keeps children in India in a disadvantaged condition because they’re denied access to education and for that reason, won’t learn any new abilities for an increased paying job (Kabir, 2003). As well as the lack of education, kid labour can pose serious health threats to children. They are often exposed to unsanitary and dangerous circumstances because employers will not provide basic health measures due to the low-income employment child labourers generally do and the lack of governmental regulations which exist (2003). Because of children working in the low-cash flow sector of the workplace, this decreases the worthiness of work for men and women and thus, mature unemployment rises. With poorly paid, unskilled children working in unsafe conditions, these children will become the near future generation in India; and for that reason, kid labour continues the cycle of poverty (2003).

Another important social factor that causes kid labour in India may be the deeply ingrained cultural ideals that have existed for decades (Kabir, 2003). Often women are overlooked of statistics regarding kid labour because sometimes they don’t function in the formal sectors of kid labour such as factories; rather they take part in domestic labour (Das & Mishra, 2005). Mummun Jha declares that there is a good amount of poverty in India and therefore the,

Situation is worsened by the actual fact that for the poor families in India, alternative sources of income are non-existent. There are no social welfare systems as those in the West. There happen to be fewer sources of loans, government loans, or different credit sources. What’s available is generally for the relatively better off (2009, p. 211).

India has passed some legislation regarding the well being of children. India did sign the Common Declaration of Human Privileges in 1948 and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the kid in 1989 (Jha, 2009). However, the Indian government hasn’t signed off on Convention 138 on Minimum Age group (1973) and Convention 182 on the Worst Forms of Kid Labour (1999) which to the ILO is known as very progressive in regards to the law against child labour (2009). The Indian government maintains due to their decentralized style of government, only the individual states in India have the constitutional power to change the law regarding the minimum age (2009). Due to this fact, an incredible number of Indian children are working illegally (2009).

I feel passionate about eliminating child labour in my own lifetime and Personally i think educating individuals, especially youth about the effects of child labour is crucial in achieving this aim. In this paper, I will argue that kid labour is a detriment to the creation of fewer economically developed countries because it prevents access to education, especially to young girls, it risks the fitness of small children, and decreases the value of adult work; therefore weakening the economic growth of a nation by perpetuating poverty.

Theoretical Backing:

W.W. Rostow’s theory on the levels of economic growth offers a justification for why child labour is present today. Rostow provided a model of monetary growth in the 1960s and it offers a theory on why some countries designed economically while others did not, in his publication called The Stages of Economic Growth (1960). Rostow would produce the argument that child labour is necessary for a few countries to industrialize as there have been some varieties of child labour through the Industrial Revolution in Europe (Venkatanarayana, 2004). Further applying Rostow’s theory of financial development to child labour, another possible reason why it even now exists today is basically because LECDs are employing child labourers so that you can contend with multi-national corporations and other more economically developed countries. Many countries employing young children are stuck in Rostow’s second stage known as ‘pre-conditions for take-off’, which may be characterized by a have to create a surplus of wealth to be able to increase investment in transportation, communication and natural supply exploitation (1960). Whereas, many other industrialized countries are in Rostow’s final stage scholarship personal statement of economic development known as ‘mass consumption’, which may be characterized by a growing demand for consumer merchandise and products and services, incomes being greater than essential for buying essentials and a rise in investment by contemporary society in well being, education and social programs (1960). Due to this fact, Rostow would help to make the argument that child labour is necessary for economic expansion in LEDCs, and in order to undertake the stages of advancement, from ‘pre-conditions for take-away’ to ‘mass intake’ (Rostow, 1960).

Research and Analysis:

Child labour is harmful to the expansion of much less economically developed countries because it presents a barrier to the training system for kids in India. “Many scholars and activists now visit a direct romance between education and child labour” (Jha, 2009, 210). Traditionally, education was only accessible to the top caste amounts (2009). Furthermore, older, cultural values still exist in India today; for instance, education is not thought of for people in the low castes, in particular females (2009).

Kumar Das and Sarojini Mishra (2005) focus specifically on the economic ramifications of child labour on females in India. Das and Mishra state that child labour for young girls is related to the deeply ingrained cultural elements such as for example, caste, religion, family group type and size. Consequently, girls belonging to the lower caste acquire little to no education and therefore are forced into kid labour to help her family financially. Das and Mishra likewise highlight that a lot of the study done on kid labourers in India focuses on children forced to operate in factories; whereas many girls are experiencing kid labour in the informal work sector, such as working at home, but are still exploited (2005). Das and Mishra conclude that better knowledge of the causes, consequences of kid labour, the labour industry and emphasis on the importance of primary school for girls in India is crucial for eliminating kid labour (2005).

Similar to Das and Mishra, analyses conducted by Rubiana Chamarbagwala (2008), provides facts that the overall increase of option of primary education in India will not only improve the number of children attending school, but it will also reduce the chances of kids working in factories. It is vital to point out that a simple upsurge in the option of education in India wouldn’t normally solve the number of young girls who see their brothers go to school while they do the job in the unpaid labour pressure, and are still being exploited.

Unlike other literature centered on child labour in India, Chamarbagwala claims that governmental policies ought to be implemented that will increase the economic advantages of education, and thus offer an incentive for households to send their kids to school instead of to work.

Mitesh Badiwala argues for a remedy for having less access to education due to child labour. He claims that even if the schools in India are very good, the monetary benefits out pounds the educational rewards for Indian parents and consequently poverty raises the dropout costs (1998). Accordingly, India should implement compulsory schooling for children. It is also important to explain that with kids in school, the availability of jobs for adults will increase. The thought of mandatory school requires guidelines to be enacted and these plans can help provide funds for the primary school system (1998). In addition, Badiwala points out that idea of compulsory education worked well for the Indian status of Kerala, which spends lots of money on education and has the highest literacy rate in the country (1998).

Recent research conducted by the International Labour Corporation (2009), has stated the newest global economic crisis that occurred in 2008 could boost the number of girls in kid labour. The ILO reports about 100 million girls world-wide are involved in some of the worst kinds of child labour today. Furthermore, the report says this is especially evident in families that place bigger importance on educating the boys of the family, that can be attributed to the original ideals embedded in India (ILO, 2003). As the global crisis impacts LEDCs, families will begin to prioritize what children head to work and school. In addition, the ILO states that the financial meltdown would decrease the national education budget and therefore, affect the importance of education to previously financially disadvantaged families.

Child labour can include many devastating effects on the health of child labourers. A study completed by Occupational Medicine (2006) studied different sets of child labourers in a variety of LEDCs. Yet, just conclusive facts was found amongst child labourers in India. The goal of the analysis was to identify whether kid labour had any influence on the final height of kid labourers. While child labour may have other negative health effects such as exposure to harsh chemicals, unsanitary circumstances, and the potential for serious injuries; whether development is influenced by child labour continues to be considered controversial. Occupational Medication focuses on the theory that child labour can immediately or indirectly affect case study interview the health of children. For instance, “It’s been assumed that the persistent physical strain of focus on developing bones and joints could lead to stunting, spinal personal injury and lifelong deformations, (2006, 1). However, growth could possibly be indirectly affected by any risk of strain on already poor bones and joints due to malnourishment. Malnourishment in child labourers is caused by long hours working and unsanitary circumstances, essentially child labourers do not get all of the required nutrients for healthy and balanced development while employed in factories. The study figured among the kids studied in India, there is evidence that child labour did affect the ultimate height of the kid labourers. This is an example of negative permanent health effects for child labourers in fact it is problematic because these children represent the continuing future of India.

Child labour is harmful to the development of India economically because kid labour devalues the work done by individuals. Basu and Van support this by suggesting that kid labour is definitely competing with adult labour in India and the partnership is unhealthy economically (1999). Basu’s studies also show that “when adult wages rise or unemployment falls, the incidence of kid labour tends to fall. Therefore, if we are very seriously worried about child labour, we will need to improve the economic state of the adult employee,” (1999, N.P.).

In comparison, Augendra Bhukuth and Jerome Ballet (2006) concentrate on whether child labour is complementary to adult labour, in particular the brick kiln sector in India. The record states that parents are aiding child labour in the brick kiln industry because children tend to be found functioning alongside their parents. Unlike virtually all other literature on child labour, this research focuses on how child labour is used to increase the value of labour, because an employer is getting a whole family’s labour. This can help to improve household productivity since the whole family works along to make a living. Although it is importance to diminish the debt owed by households in LECDs, the study does not acknowledge the mental damages a kid will face as a result of intensive labour they experienced during childhood.

Sebastian Braun (2006) examines the relationship between child labour and foreign direct investment (FDI). One would think that FDI would be drawn to countries with kid labour because of the increases in earnings made because of this of the low wages earned by personnel in comparison to developed countries. However, good evidence points to fewer FDI flowing to countries which have child labourers, due to young children making up the labour pressure. To foreign investors child labour reflects poorly on an economy, since the labour force is actually small children. Therefore, to enhance the chances of getting FDI and thus bettering the economy, countries such as for example India, should eliminate all forms of child labour and use adults simply. If FDI can be deterred predicated on child labour, then LEDCs employing children are continuing the cycle of poverty and reducing likelihood of economic growth because they will not receive foreign investment.


In conclusion, the economic development of fewer economically developed countries is merely negatively impacted by child labour. In regards to school, kid labour is preventing access to education. In India young girls attend school significantly less than boys, due to traditional values nonetheless prevalent in the country today (Das and Mishra, 2005). Chamarbagwala argues that governmental policies ought to be implemented that specifically improve the economic advantages of sending children to school; thus giving families a motivation to send their children to university in India (2008). Badiwala claims there is potential for compulsory education to greatly help eradicate child labour in India; pointing to the Indian talk about of Kerala as an example (1998).

In regards to the fitness of child labourers, there is proof that states that child labour affects the ultimate elevation of an Indian kid, among various other serious short and long term effects (Occupational Medicine, 2006). Unfortunately, there are few studies that state the health effects of child labour on young girls working in the domestic or unpaid labour power.

Lastly, one of the most detrimental effects child labour has on the economical development of a nation may be the fact that kid labour devalues the task done by individuals (Basu and Van, 1999). Basu and Van argue that only when the economic condition is improved, will child labourers cease to exist (1999). Furthermore, an interesting study executed by Bhukuth and Ballet states that sometimes parents continue the condition of kid labour by having their kids work alongside them in the brick kiln industry (2006). Moreover, it’s been tested that child labour could be harmful economically since it decreases the country’s likelihood at attracting foreign immediate investment (Braun, 2006). As a result, child labour is damaging to the monetary development of a much less economically developed country since it presents a barrier to the training of kids, it risks the health of child labourers brief and permanent and continues the routine of poverty by devaluing the task done by adults.