Fifty-four child labourers were rescued by authorities from button-making units in south Delhi on Thursday and 10 of their employers taken into custody.
This is the fourth such operation in the national capital in the last eight days in which a total of 145 children have been rescued from various parts of the capital.
The Delhi Task Force on Elimination of Child Labour, police and Labour Department officials conducted today's raid in Govindpuri area following a complaint filed by child rights NGO Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA).
Fifty-four children were rescued from button-making units in the area, BBA said in a press statement. The children, all in the age group of 7-14 years, have mostly been trafficked from Bihar.
All the units were illegally running in the residential area. The owners had employed adults on the first and second floor and in almost all the units, children were locked on the top floor and made to work from 10 am to 1 am in the night, BBA officials said.
In one of the units, 11 children ate, slept and worked in a 20x10 room that was ill-ventilated, they said.
Seven-year-old Raju (name changed), said, "my uncle brought me here from Bihar six months back. My parents were told that I would be paid. It's been six months that I have been working here but I have not been given a single penny. They tell me this is the training period so I would only get my lunch. I used to make 4,000-5,000 buttons in a day."
Sub-Divisional Magistrate of Kalkaji, VP Singh said, "10 employers have been arrested in the raid. We would see to it that they are booked under stringent penal provisions and ensure compensation and rehabilitation of the victims."
On April 28, 72 child labourers were rescued from bag manufacturing units in Nabi Kareem area of central Delhi and eight of their employers taken into custody.
On May 3, 16 child labourers were rescued from a bakery unit in Rohini while three children were rescued by authorities from an electric sockets manufacturing unit in west Delhi on May 4.