Child labour has always been a concern in India. However, strict laws have been made by the Supreme court, still you can see working children at many places in our country. The main reason this bad practice is poverty and lack of education. Poverty makes the parents and children compel to work somewhere for their survival and lack of education does not make them aware of their rights as human beings. According to the Constitution Of India, children below 14 years of age are not allowed to work in any public place, factory, mine or any hazardous place. Therefore, the minimum child labour ages is 14 years. Child labour below 14 years of age is considered as strictly prohibited. If this rule is violated then, a fine can be imposed and imprisonment of several years can happen in some states.
The limitation is regarding working hours also. Children are not allowed to work for more than six hours in which one hour break is mandatory after working 3 hours. Also, night shift and overtime is prohibited for these children. It is mandatory for the state to provide compulsory education to the children of six to fourteen years and this education should be absolutely free. In July 2016, The child labour amendment act 2012 has been passed with major amendments like:
Below 14 years children are not supposed to work at any hazardous place be it mine, factory or any other place like automobile shops, bidi making factories, mines, carpet weaving, handloom industry and powerloom industry, chemical factories, pharmaceuticals, it is completely prohibited. However, children under 14 years are allowed to work in family enterprises which are non hazardous and that too either after the school or during vacations and not full time. They can work in the audio visual industry, entertainment industry, advertisements, cinemas, TV serials, other sources of entertainment and sport activities. Here, one point needs to be added that these children are not allowed to work in a circus. However, in both above working conditions there are some laws related to children safety which need to be taken and provide an assurance that the children will not miss their school and education as this is the priority for them. The violation of child labour ages and laws can lead to the fine of Rs. 20,000 to Rs. 50,000 and upto 6 months of imprisonment.
This is all about the child labor ages in our country and related laws which need to be followed by every citizen of thr country.