Directorate of Employment and Training Department of Factories and Boilers Directorate of ESIS(M) Services

11. The Child Labour (Prohibition & Regulation) Act, 1986.  (Central  Act w.e.f. 23-12-86)

Object: Employment of children not completed the age of 14 years in certain Hazardous processes and occupations as listed in part A & B of the schedule to the Act is prohibited under this Act and it regulates the conditions of work of children in certain other employments. 


No child shall be permitted to work in any establishments beyond 4 ½ hours in a day.  One hour rest is required after 3 hours of work. Weekly holidays, medical facilities are to be provided.  However, under Section 24 of the Karnataka Shops & Commercial Establishments Act, 1961, employing children below the age of 14 years is totally prohibited in all the shops and establishments in Karnataka.  Therefore, the question of regulation does not arise in Karnataka.


Complaints can be filed against child labour cases by any person, Police Officer or Inspectors appointed under Section 17 of the Act in any of the competent Judicial Courts.  Severe penalties are prescribed in the Act for violations.  Age certificate of every child labour, obtained from Government doctor shall be the conclusive evidence as to the age of the child.  All employers shall follow the same.  In Karnataka, in addition to the Inspectors / officers of Labour Department, officers of other Departments like CDPOs, Eos of Taluk Panchayats, Health Inspectors of Municipalities/ Corporation, Revenue Inspector of Revenue Department, Block Education Officers etc., are also   notified as Inspectors to inspect the establishment under this Act.


Many other Labour Laws including the Factories Act, 1948, also prohibit employment of children.  Therefore, engaging child labour in any area is in fact an offence and action shall be taken against such erring employers. 

Under Section 3 of this Act, no child shall be employed or permitted to work in any of the occupations set forth in Part – A and/or in any of the workshop wherein any of the processes set forth in Part – B, as under:

The Occupations / processes in which the ‘child labour’ is prohibited under Section 3 of the Child Labour (Regulation & Abolition) Act, 1986:

The Schedule

[See Section 3]

Part A


Any occupation connected with –

(1) Transport of passengers, goods or mails by railway;
(2) Cinder picking, clearing of an ash pit or building operation in the railway premises;
(3) Work in a catering establishment at a railway station involving the movement of a vendor or any other employee of the establishment from one platform to another or into or out of a moving train;
(4) Work relating to the construction of a railway station or with any other work where such work is done in close proximity to or between the railway lines;
(5) A port authority within the limits of any port;
(6) Work relating to selling of crackers, and fire works in shops with temporary licences;
(7) Abattoirs/Slaughter Houses.
(8) Automobile workshops and garages;
(9) Foundries;
(10) Handling of toxic or inflammable substances or explosives;
(11) Handloom and powerloom industry;
(12) Mines (underground and under water) and collieries;
(13) Plastic units and fiberglass workshops.

Part B



 (1) Bidi making;
(2) Carpet-weaving;
(3) Cement manufacturer, including bagging of cement;
(4) Cloth printing, dyeing and weaving;
(5) Manufacture of matches, explosives and fire-works;
(6) Mica-cutting and splitting;
(7) Shellac manufacture;
(8) Soap manufacture;
(9) Tanning;
(10) Wool cleaning;
(11) Building and construction industry including processing and polishing of granite stones;
(12) Manufacture of products from agate;
(13) Manufacture of slate pencils (including packing);
(14) Manufacturing processes using toxic metals and substances such as lead, mercury, manganese, chromium, cadmium, benzene, pesticides and asbestos;
(15) ‘Hazardous processes’ as defined in Section 2 (cb) and ‘dangerous operations’ as notified in rules made under Section 87 of the Factories Act, 1948 (63 of 1948);
(16) Printing as defined in Section 2 (k) (iv) of the Factories Act, 1948 (63 of 1948);
(17) Cashew and cashew nut decaling and processing;
(18) Soldering processes in electronic industries;
(19) Agarabatti manufacturing;
(20) Automobile repairs and maintenance including processes incidental thereto namely, welding, lathe work, dent beating and painting;
(21) Brick kilns and Roof tiles units;
(22) Cotton ginning and processing and production of hosiery goods;
(23) Detergent manufacturing;
(24) Fabrication workshops (ferrous and non_ferrous);
(25) Gem cutting and polishing;
(26) Handling of chromite and manganese ores;
(27) Jute textile manufacture and coir making;

LiLime Kilns and manufacture of Lime;

(29) Lock making;
(30) Manufacturing processes having exposure to lead such as primary and secondary smelting, welding and cutting of lead-painted metal constructions, welding or galvanized organic silicate, polyvinyl chloride, mixing (by hand) of crystal glass mass, sanding or scraping of lead paint, burning of lead in enameling workshops, lead mining, plumbing, cable making, wiring patenting, lead casting, type founding in printing shops.  Store type setting, assembling of cars, shot making and lead glass blowing;
(31) Manufacture of cement pipes, cement products and other related work;
(32) Manufacture of glass, glassware including bangles, florescent tubes, bulbs and other similar glass products;
(33) Manufacture of dyes and dye stuff;
(34) Manufacturing or handling of pesticides and insecticides;
(35) Manufacturing or processing and handling of corrosive and toxic substances, metal cleaning and photo engraving and soldering processes in electronic industry;
(36) Manufacturing of burning coal and coal briquettes;
(37) Manufacturing of sports goods involving exposure to synthetic materials, chemicals and leather;
(38) Moulding and processing of fiberglass and plastic;
(39) Oil expelling and refinery;
(40) Paper making;
(41) Potteries and Ceramic industry;
(42) Polishing, moulding, cutting, welding and manufacturing of brass goods in all forms;
(43) Processes in agriculture where tractors, threshing and harvesting machines are used and chaff cutting;
(44) Saw mill – all processes;
(45) Sericulture processing;
(46) Skinning, dyeing and processes for manufacturing of leather and leather products;
(47) Stone breaking and stone crushing;
(48) Tobacco processing including manufacturing of tobacco, tobacco paste and handling of tobacco in any form;
(49) Tyre making, repairing, re-treading and graphite benefication;
(50) Utensils making, polishing and metal buffing;
(51) ‘Zari’ making (all processes)’
(52) Electroplating;
(53) Graphite powdering and incidental processing;
(54) Grinding or glazing of metal;
(55) Diamond cutting and polishing;
(56) Extraction of slate from mines;
(57) Rag picking and scavenging.


Rules: 1.       The Child Labour (Prohibition & Regulation) Rules, 1988 – Central Rules.

         (iii)      The Child Labour (Prohibition & Regulation) Karnataka Rules, 1997, applies to the whole State of Karnataka.

Important Registers to be maintained under Karnataka Rules:

1)  Muster roll of children in Form-A

2)  Certificate of Age in Form-B

3)  Medical fitness in Form-C, be obtained once in a year.

The District Child Labour Rehabilitation-cum-Welfare Fund Scheme – notified vide Notification No. LD13 LBW 97(P) 29-9-1997 by GoK.

Action Plan on elimination of child labour in Krnataka:

*    Magnitude of the child labour Problem: As per 1991 Census, child labour percentage to child population is   8.7% in Karnataka and it comes to 9.76 lakhs. Whereas, it is 14.7% in Andhra Pradesh and 5.1% in Tamilnadu.

*    In 1991, out-of-school children in Karnataka were 26 lakhs.  But, as per the recent survey conducted by the Department of Education, number of out-of-school children in Karnataka came down to 10.53 lakhs, between the age group of 6 to 14 years.  Hence, the number of child labour also might have come down.  However, the exact number of child labour is not known unless the survey is conducted.   As per the survey of 1997, the child labour identified were 40,529 in manufacturing and other units.

*    Recently the Government of Karnataka has approved an Action Plan for elimination of child labour considering the magnitude of child labour problems. This Action Plan was launched officially on 31-05-2001 by the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Karntaka, while inaugurating the “Karmika Bhavan”.  The main objectives of this Action Plan are:

*   The main focus is to identify through survey, release and rehabilitate the working children below the age of 14 years both in hazardous and non-hazardous activities. 

*   The Action Plan is for a period of 6 years.  Our vision is to make Karnataka a child labour-free State by the year 2007.

*   The Government has given approval for the financial commitment of 6 crores per year for implementation of Action Plan.

*   Under the Action Plan, the scheme is to open  Special Residential Schools-cum-Rehabilitation Centres in all the Districts to rehabilitate released child labour.  Each center will be with 50 students.  The entire expenditure will be from State funds.  The expected total expenditure per child is Rs. 600/- per month.

*   The existing 190 special schools under NCLP will also be converted into Special Residential Schools-cum-Rehabilitation centers in 7 Districts (Bijapur-40, Gadag-5, Haveri-10, Dharwad-25, Raichur-30, Bangalore Rural-40 and Bangalore Urban-40) and the additional amount will be met by the State Government. The actual amount given by GoI is about 339/- per month per child for all expenditure. 

*   The running of these schools will be assigned to the NGOs through the Deputy Commissioner of the District who is overall incharge of the programme.

*   Massive awareness generation programme will be launched on the evils of child labour by involving the entire Society including local bodies and elected representatives to create an environment for elimination of child labour and sending children to school.

*   Karnataka may be the 1st State to take up a comprehensive Action Plan for elimination of child labour with the State Government budget and the rehabilitation centers will be with residential facilities, besides providing educational inputs. 

*   In order to implement the Action Plan successfully, the involvement of all the Departments of Government is essential.  This point has been stressed and the responsibility for each department is fixed in the Action Plan.  The child labour problem has to be tackled through an integrated approach and convergence of services.

*   At the State level, High Power Committee under the Chairmanship of the Hon’ble Chief Minister will monitor and provide policy directions.

*   There will be another State level Co-ordination Committee under the chairmanship of the Additional Chief Secretary to Government of Karnataka to co-ordinate with various Government Departments and NGOs.

*   Department of Labour is the Nodal agency to implement the Plan.

*  At the District level, Deputy Commissioner of the District is responsible to implement the Action Plan.   There will be an Advisory Committee with all the elected representatives as members to advise and guide the District Administration.  Similarly, there will be an Executive Committee, which will actually execute the Plan. 

*   There is a Society called District Child Labour Project Society through which the project will be implemented.  The Rehabilitation Centres – cum – Special Residential Schools will run by NGOs.  Wherever the reliable NGOs are not available then the above said Society may take up this responsibility. 

*   We made it clear that the staff of the Society will be purely on voluntary basis and will get honorarium only.  The recruitment of teachers, etc., in the rehabilitation centers will be the responsibility of the concerned NGOs. 

*   Target : In total, 48,000 to 50,000 child labour will be rehabilitated during the Action Plan period of 6 years.  The child labour as and when released will be admitted in these Special Residential Schools and after initial coaching/rehabilitation, they will be admitted in the mainstream schools, depending upon their literacy skills and family background. 

*   Under the Action Plan, it is also proposed to help the parents of child labour in order to compensate the income earned by the child under various developmental and poverty alleviation programmes of Government.

*   The ILO and UNICEF are very supportive for these programmes and we are seeking external financial assistance through these organizations for elimination of child labour.



As soon as a complaint is received regaridng existance of child labour, the petition / complaint is transferred to concerned Labour Officer. The Officer immediately forms a team consisiting of Officials of Labour department, Education department with Medical Officer of ESI Corporation and conduct a raid of the establishment where child labour is alleged to be working.


If the Doctor in the team certifies that the child working is below 14 years of age, the Area Inspector draws a Notes of Inspection and serves on the employer / owner / person present at the time of inspection and allows one week time to explain why he should not be prosecuted for the violation of Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986 or Karnataka Shops and Commercial Establishments Act, 1961 and Minimum Wages Act, 1948. If the wages paid to that child labour / adolscent labour is less than the wages fixed by Government to that  category of establishment, Inspectors will calculate the difference of minimum wages and files a claim application before the Minimum Wages Authority.


When the employers fails to produce any documentary proof regarding the age of child labour,( ie above 14 years) Inspectors files a criminal complaint before the Area Judicial Magistrate.


The working child is released from the workspot and admitted either to the nearest Child Labour Special School or Mainstream School, according to his learning capacity.


Apart from that request will be made to the concerned Deputy Commissioner to collect Rs.20,000/-per child labour employed in Hazardous Industries and deposit in the   “ Corpus Fund ” as per the direction of Hon’ble Supreme Court.

National Child Labour Project (NCLP):

The objectives of NCLP are:

(i)  To ensure progressive elimination of child labour;

(ii)  To integrate general welfare programmes for the benefit of the families of child workers.

These Projects were launched by Government of India in 1998-99, for the areas where high concentration of child labour was noticed, to release children from work and to rehabilitate them through education, nutrition, etc.  During 9th plan, the Government of India had approved 100 NCLP Projects.  This policy envisages focusing of different development and welfare programmes for the benefit of child labour.   In the project areas, an integration of such programmes has been attempted.  For this purpose, a project society has been established in each District.

The activities taken up in these projects are:

*        Stepping up of enforcement of child labour laws;

*        Non-formal education;

*        Adult education;

*        Income and Employment generation;

*        Special Schools;

*        Raising public awareness and

*        Survey and Evaluation.

In the special schools, non-formal education and vocational trainings are imparted along with provision of supplementary nutrition and health care services.  In addition, stipend is paid to children withdrawn from employment.

NCLP Special Schools in Karnataka:

Management of these Projects is the responsibility of the District Child Labour Project Society registered under the Societies Registration Act for which the Deputy Commissioner of the District is the Chairman.  The Society is also having its own staff, like Project Director and field officers to look after the day-to-day functioning of the Project. 

In Karnataka, special schools are sanctioned under the project in the following Districts:

       i)    Bijapur –40;

ii)    Dharwad –25;

iii)   Haveri – 10;

iv)   Raichur –30;

v)    Gadag – 5

vi)   Banglore Rural – 40;

vii)   Bangalore Urban – 40

        In each school, 50 child labour can be admitted.   The NGOs are actually running the special schools.  The specific address of the school can be obtained from the Society at district level.   

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