Policies Made by the Indian Government for Providing Free and Compulsory Education to Children’s
The landmark of 1974 was the formulation for the National policy on children. The Government enunciated “The National Policy for Children in their resolution by the Department of Social Welfare. In 1975, Integrated Child Development services was launched to improve the health status and nutritional need of vulnerable groups including preschool children, nursing mother, pregnant women with delivery package of services.
The main aim is to make human development with the policies and programme for a child survival and development receiving high priority. It mainly focus on the 9th plan which views that child development as an investment for better future of country and improving the nation’s quality of life.
In 1979, International year of child was celebrated. In 1983, National Health policy was formulated and in 1985, the Department of women and child development was set up with the responsibility for the welfare of women and children. In 1986, National policy of education was set up for children who attain the age of 11 years.
In SAARC there are more than 410 million children below the age of 15. The SAARC has made integrated development of children. In 1985, the Ministerial Conference of SAARC held in Dhaka recommended that the first south Asia conference on children be held in 1986 in New Delhi. The well being and integrated welfare of children. In 1987, the National policy on child labour was formulated.
This policy envisages effective enforcement of child labour related law, services for the benefit of the parents of child labour in order to improve their economic condition and launching projects for high concentration of child labour.
In 1995-96, the ultimate objectives put on the ground for withdrawing the 2 million working children from hazardous employment and rehabilitating them by special schools. In 1990, the world summit on the survival, protection and development of children. In 1992, India formulation its national plan of Action for children. In 1993, National Nutritional Policy was formulated.
In 1994, NGO’s cell by the Department of Women and Child Development was set up. It was on 15 Aug., 1994, PM of India has projected approach for elimination of child labour. This was one of the initial step and gradual approach for the elimination of child labour and rehabilitation of child workers of hazardous employment and any other employment.
In 1995, National Plan of Action on Nutrition and launching the Pulse Polio immunization programme to eradicate polio from our society. In 1996, the Communication strategy for child development was introduced. National Child labour programme, Reproductive and health programme for the protection of children. Eradication of child labour has integrated into poverty alleviation and rural development programme through literacy.
It limits the magnitude of this evil “problem. The universalization of education and eradication of poverty set as millennium goals by 2015 should help the limit the magnitude of this evil problem. Indian constitution makes recognition of dignity and provides tender life of child. Article, 15, 21,23,24,38,39,41,42 and 47 provide welfare of children. Article 38, 42, 43 and 47 of Directive principles of state policy dealing with the welfare measures of the people.
Article 15 provides that state shall not discriminate against any citizen. Article 21(A) directs the state for free and compulsory education to all the citizens of the age for 6-14 years in such manners as the state may determine by law. Article 21 direct that no person shall be deprived of his personal liberty. Article 23 prohibits the trafficking of human beings, beggar and other similar fumy of forced labour.
Article 24 prohibits employment of children below the age of 14 years in factories or any hazardous places. Article 39(C) of Directive principle ensures that the health of male, female and child workers are not abused and citizens are not forced to economic necessity to enter a vocation unsuited to their age and strength.
Article 39(f) directs the state to ensure that the children are given opportunities of development and facilities to develop in healthy manner in condition of freedom and dignity and that children and youth are protected against exploitation and against the moral and material abandonments. Article 42 prescribes for securing just and human condition of work and for maternity relief.
Article 45 states that the state shall Endeavour to provide early childhood, care and free compulsory education for all children until they complete the age of 14. Article 47 prescribes for rising of the level of nutrition and standard of living to its people.
All these constitutional provision help in protection of rights of children. As children is the future of our country. While healthy, prosperous and growing children ensure the bright future, working, exploited and physically weak children not only suffer but also fail to contribute toward the growth of the nation.
Because of poverty and uneven development, no country in the world is free from the menace of child labour. But each country is trying to eliminate the plight of child labour. The Government of India, since the adoption of constitution in 1950 has been making efforts for tackling such problems. The Government of India, Non-government organization and international agencies like
UNICEF, ILO, World Bank are trying to eliminate all the problems relating to children and make enforcement of various “labour act, minimum wages act etc. implementation of employment generation programmes, poverty alleviation programme, setting of special rehabilitation and upliftment of child labour. This protection of child labour preserves the country future valuable human resources but also promote Indian dominance in world economy.
The people must be educated, conceived the dimension and magnitude of socio-economic implication of child labour and change their attitude to minimize the incidence of child labour.
The economic empowerment of women change in attitude of men and women toward girls child, a strong political will to implements the law, compulsory primary education to children and health care benefit can change the status of girls child and children welfare toward the early decades of 21st century.
For this empowerment, female has to come with full confidence to struggle to get their rights. As Swami Vivekananda said, “one has to snatch their right from the society as nobody will give when one ask for a thing.”
These girls child is perceived as the burden to pass on to another family. Her contribution in the household economy is unacknowledged. The declaration of 1991-2000 as the decade of girl child, resulting in catalyzing thought and action pertaining to the issue of girl child, gender disparity and finally warranted intervention complementary to their proper development.
The Colombo Summit of 1991 developed a focused plan of action for the girl child. Priority concerned was listed in this plan and obstacles in the path of development along with the programme for implementation were spelled out. The evaluation made by SAARC culminated in emphasizing the elimination gender bias in the planning processes ensuring economic development.
The National Plan of Action for Girl Child (1991-2000) to take effective action safeguarding children from sexual exploitation and abuse. The action plan also aims at initiating action programme to prevent abduction and sale of girls for purpose of prostitution. The 1990, the world summit for children adopted a convention of the right of child, Article 34 of the convention call in countries to prevent-
(a) The exploitative use of children in pornographic material and performances.
(b) The inducement of child engaged in any unlawful sexual activity.
(c) The exploitative use of children in prostitution of other unlawful sexual practices.
The Centre for Child Labour (CFCL) warns that India has above 4 lakh under 15 child prostitutes for child sex tourism. It also conducts report against child sex violation. The “Progress of Nations” brought by UNICEF report that there will no children involved in prostitution. In 1996 world congress against commercial sexual exploitation of children took place in Stockholm.
While the government is contemplating to make the primary education a fundamental right nearly six per cent of children between the age group of 5-14 in India working as labourer in various “formal sector” commented UNESCO in a report on the “situational analysis of education for street and working children in India.”
Criticizing the government of lack of political will to ensure compulsory education for all children up to 14 years of age, UNESCO said, “Poor educational infrastructure in the villages is the major hurdle in eradicating child labour.”
It recommended involvement of Non-Governmental Organisation and other Social Organisation in the task of universalization of education. The guiding principle of the SAARC Decade Plan of action for he girl child is-
(1) The socio-economic discrimination prevailing against the girl child in South Asia, as revealed by demographic indicators, requires change in social attitude and behavioral practices in relation to the development of opportunities for them.
(2) The equality of status of girl child will be ensured through special opportunities for her growth and for the development of their full potential as individual and as citizen in her own right.
(3) Without any prejudice to the integration of the goals for the girl child with the goals for children and development in 1990’s her situation demand formulation of goals and strategies that are sensitive to her multiple and specific needs.
These gender specific SAARC goals have been drawn up and work for child protection, development and survival. It work for eliminating of gender disparity in input five child morality rapes, emphasizes on raising the present mean age at marriage by last 5 years and postponing the first pregnancy till after the age of 20 and reduction of severe malnutrition among the children below the age of 5 years.
Government policy drawn large number of schemes through its various ministries to deal with various problems of children. The strategy to reach out the children includes the starting of “well defined open learning system” (OLS) especially for girls, women, SC’s, ST’s and poor. OLS being acquisition of life skills, vocational skill directly contributing to productivity and inculcation of habit self-learning.
The Eight Planned for day care centre for the school children and infant, provision of free uniforms, coordination of support services such as fodder and fuel to release children, drinking water, especially girls as well as women from related domestic chores. Monetary incentives and income generation schemes for parent sending their children to school form a significant part of strategy to deal with child labour.
The Ministry of labour, few important programme for promotion of education among children, compelled to work due to economic stress through non-formal education centre. The welfare ministry fund several programmes for the welfare of street children.
The ultimate objective of the programme is to ensure minimum level of learning gt each stage of education, especially for those children who are not likely to avail of education beyond this stage and enable them to function in their world as socially useful and contributing individual. A large number of programme are implemented through Non-Governmental Organisation.
These programme essentially involve providing educational facilities, skil development and health care for children. NGO have concentrated on developing innovative teaching methods in schools, night shelter, and training of developing alternate skill through vocational training form the care of programme are meant for street children.
Both formal and informal, and in making the curriculum more relevant to the need of working children. They deal with the problem of child labour and implementation of the large number of programme by the Government directly and through NGO’s in presence of these policies.
Most of NGO’s create impact on the child labour situation. Child labour is inevitable sequel of the economic force operating on a poor household. According to United International Children Emergency Fund (UNICEF) report, during the decade (1985-95) approx. 2 million children have died in war, about 4 to 5 million have physically disabled, 12 million left homeless. International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) who is witness to atrocities on close relative, suffered from serious set back. According to Tiwari, child development work as under-
(a) Emotional Development includes family attachment, feeling of care, acceptance, and self esteem.
(b) Social and Moral Development include ability to cooperate with other, capacity to distinguish right from wrong.
(c) Physical Development includes overall health, strength, vision, hearing and coordination.
(d) Cognitive Development includes acquisition of knowledge necessary for normal life and literacy.
UNICEF support programme aimed at bonded and hazardous child labour and sever discrimination faced by girls child. Every child has right to joyful childhood and to education and child labour should be eliminated and there should be universalization of primary education UNICEF main aim is to provide the basic needs of children, it also developed is the major channel through which child related issue can find expression at the international level and be addressed through specific programme intervention.
It Endeavour toward implementation of the convention on the right of child. It supports enabling government to review legislation pertaining to children in order to ensure compliance with the norm of convention and with international humanitarian law for child protection.
UNICEF will be guided by the branch of the centre for human rights, which is responsible for advisory services and technical assistance in the field of human rights. It supports relevant studies on the convenient related issue.
It create and further develop national mechanism can be uses as basis for policy development and the state report on compliance with the convention. In regard, UNICEF is preparing guidelines for country situation analysis to ensure that standard set by the convention and range of issue of raise are systematically incorporated in to the scope of this analysis.
UNICEF promotes activities with schools and youth organisation to enable children to participate in debate to support the implementation of the convention and to express their view on their own situation. It strengthens the capacity of the national committee for undertaken advocacy and other activities to support the implementation of convention. It creates more awareness and provides information of children’s rights among children, youths and influential groups.
UNICEF support research and studies of applying the convention in specific circumstances where children are at greatest risk and where the problems is common to both developing and industrialized countries, for example studies on the situation of children of migrant and complementarily between implementing children and women rights.
It also provides information exchange on policies and programmes in developing countries, also applicable in various developed and industrialized countries. It is guided UN convention on Rights of child to established and make children rights as enduring ethical principles and international standard of behavior towards children.
This fund support programmes in mother and child health, water sanitation, nutrition, universalization of education and elimination of child labour. Its primary mission is to respond the basic needs of children and bring protection of their rights.
UNICEF and ILO work for the providing opportunities of development to all the children so that they bring better future of nation.