80 percent of the child labour is concentrated in rural India

New Delhi: Child labour not only robs childhood of those caught in it, but also keep them away from school where they could have learned and achieved great things.

Today is World Anti-Child Labour Day which is observed to raise awareness about the ills of child labour.

Unfortunately in India, the sight of children indulging in some work is accepted as normal. Between the age of 5-18, India has a whopping 33 million child labourers. Uttar Pradesh is home to the largest number of child labourers in the country – over 6 lakh children (Census 2011). 80 percent of the child labour in India is concentrated in rural India.

In 2011, there were an estimated 215 million child laborers in the world – 115 million of which were involved in hazardous work. To combat child labor around the world the International Labour Organization (ILO) initiated the World Day Against Child Labor in 2002.

According to UNICEF, children in the United States are employed in agriculture, a high proportion of them from immigrant or ethnic-minority families. There have also been a number of incidents of westerns companies exploiting child laborers in developing countries to save production costs.

Anti-Child Labor Day is observed on June 12 every year. The initiative was first observed in the year 2002 by the International Labor Organization (ILO), which is regulated by the UN body.

In 2019, the International Labour Organization celebrates 100 years of advancing social justice and promoting decent work. The World Day Against Child Labour looks back on progress achieved over a 100 years of ILO support to countries on tackling child labour.