Saturday, 25 June 2016

Goa Child Rights Commission collaborates with the Legal Aid Cells of V. M.Salgaocar College of Law - Campaign against Child Labour

Goa starts campaign in tourist belt against child labour

The Goa State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (GSCPCR), in joint collaboration with Goa Tourism and Legal Aid Cells of V.M. Salgaocar Law College here, will launch an extensive campaign ahead of the up-coming tourist season to discourage child labour in tourism, which thrives in the coastal belt during tourist season.

The programme, which was planned on World Anti-Child Labour Day on June 12, involves awareness through street plays by students, direct surveys and inspections of hotels and shacks with the help of Labour Commissioner’s staff.

Chairperson of GSCPCR Dr. Sushma Kirtani told The Hindu here on Friday, “To discourage tourists from purchasing products and services along coastal belt, which are linked to child labour, 200 tourist police will be specially deployed on the 106-km coastline.” She said that in Goa, the issue has assumed concern because a lot of children of migrant labourers coming from across the country are being used, especially in coastal belt, by small hotels, shacks, and even in massage parlours.

Dr. Kirtani, a paediatrician by profession, said that 250 million children in the age of 5-17 years are involved in labour in the country. Of these, 70 per cent are in agriculture.

Households, and tourism sector are hidden part of this segment, and hence difficult to assess. She said the campaign aims at discouraging tourists from abetting child labour.Goa’s tourism season begins in October and extends up to March.

A large number of migrant children are found selling imitation jewellery, juice and peanuts on Goa’s beach. Many children are used by some on the coast to give massages to tourists.

On its part, the Tourism Ministry will add to the existing 30-member strong Tourism Security Force (TSF) more personnel to curb the menace. Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar told The Hindu , “TSF personnel will work under the Tourism Ministry, and once we have the additional force, we will completely control the practice of child labour.”