The state’s labour department on Thursday decided to prosecute television serial producers, who hire child artistes.
Officials said criminal cases would be filed against 10 producers, of shows like Balika Vadhu, Uttaran, Maayka, Chhotte Ustad, at the relevant courts on Friday.
Labour Minister Nawab Malik said the producers were sent notices a month back but they had not replied within the stipulated 15-day period.
In December, the labour department had decided that children working in TV shows also are “child labourers and should be brought within the ambit of the state law”.
It was said that producers should report to the department about the number of child artistes hired, their work hours, whether they are given time off to study — basically to ensure a suitable working environment.
The producers had then argued that child artistes working in television shows do not constitute child labourers.
“We are going as per procedure. These television show producers under the Child Labour Prohibition and Regulation Act are employers and have to register with us. But they have not,” said Malik.
If convicted, the 10 producers can attract up to six months’ imprisonment and fine up to Rs 10,000.