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Child labour Bill to be brought in coming Parliament session:Bandaru Dattatreya

PTI 20 Nov 2014, 20:53:56 PM IST

Hyderabad: The Centre plans to bring a long-pending key amendment Bill that seeks to ban employment of children below 14 years of age in any occupation in the coming session of Parliament.

Calling for spreading awareness about elimination of child labour, Union Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya today said tough punishment needs to be handed out to those who employ under-age kids.

“We need to educate all towards elimination of child labour. Tough punishment needs to be handed out to those who encourage child labour. We need to definitely implement the Child Labour Act, 1986.

We will bring the Child Labour Act (amendment Bill) in coming Parliament session,” he said.  The month-long winter session of Parliament will begin on November 24.

The amendment Bill of Child Labour Act, pending since 2012, has proposed to ban employment of children below 14 years of age in any occupation.

Dattatreya was talking to reporters after holding a review meeting with Telangana Labour Minister Naini Narasimha Reddy and Labour Department officials on welfare of unorganised sector workers and other issues here.  

He said the Centre would help Telangana in providing “bridge” schools (where children can be prepared for regular education system) and funds for elimination of child labour.  

Observing that 93 per cent of workers are in the unorganised sector, he said the NDA Government is keen providing social security to them.

The Government is providing portable unique number to all workers as about Rs 22,000 crore of EPF money was lying unclaimed, he said.

The benefits of Rashtriya Swasth Bima Yojana, Indira Gandhi Old Age Pension, Aam Admi Bima Pension would be provided under one smart card, the Minister said.

Noting that the smart card programme would be implemented as a pilot project, Dattatreya said it would be carried out in Hyderabad, and Mahabubnagar in Telangana. 

Maintaining that Telangana has a large population of beedi workers, he said the Centre is thinking of hiking the funds for constructing houses for them from Rs 40,000 to Rs 1 lakh.

He said an institute for skill upgradation would be set up in Hyderabad.