Chandigarh, June 30: The Child Labour Eradication Week June 12-18 in Punjab has meant freedom for 667 children who were forced to work at various places, a minister said here Thursday.
‘Six hundred and sixty-seven children engaged as child labour were got released by the teams of labour department during the Child Labour Eradication Week observed in the state,’ Labour Minister Arunesh Shakir said here.
He said that during the week, special teams were constituted under the deputy commissioner concerned and these teams conducted raids in 6,166 different centres.
Shakir said that during such raids, 667 cases of child labour were detected and 608 offenders were booked for the offence.
‘All these offenders have been fined Rs.20,000 each. The fine collected has been deposited in the fund of Child Rehabilitation Society of each district,’ the minister said.
He said that cases would be submitted to the respective courts soon. The punishment in this offence ranges from a fine of Rs.10,000 to six months imprisonment.
He said that among these cases, 426 children were found to be working in dangerous occupations. The maximum of 175 cases of child labour were found in Ludhiana, followed by Moga (72) and Jalandhar (72) districts.
Shakir added that the state government was committed to abolishing child labour in the state. He said that raids against child labour would continue in future also.