Five eatery owners arrested for employing minors
Navi Mumbai Six boys aged 13 to 16 were rescued from various shops in Turbhe and Vashi on Tuesday in an operation to clamp down on child labour in Navi Mumbai. The anti-human trafficking unit (AHTU) arrested five employers.
Most children were found working long hours for ₹1,000 to ₹2,000 a month.
“We received information that minor children were working in shops. This flouts the Juvenile Justice Act. We raided five small-time shops along with the labour officer and rescued the boys, who were working in kitchens,” said Sunita Bhoir, assistant inspector at the AHTU.
A 13-year-old boy, who was working at a tea stall at Turbhe, used to get ₹1,500 a month . The tea stall owner, Rajkishor Yadav, 43, was arrested.
A 16-year-old boy who ran away from his Rajasthan home was rescued from a lunch home in Turbhe. He worked and stayed at the shop and was paid only ₹1,000 for working almost the entire day, said the police. The 22-year-old shop owner, Chelaram Chowdhari, was arrested.
Two boys aged 15 were rescued from another restaurant in Turbhe. The boys, hailing from Malda, were working there for three months. Another 16-year-old boy from Uttar Pradesh was rescued from a juice centre while a 15-year-old boy was rescued from a catering service in APMC fruit market.
Sayyed Ali, Baburam Pal, 55, and Subhash Gupta, 49, were arrested. All the five men were handed over to the APMC police station and later released on bail. The accused were booked under Juvenile Justice Act and Child and Adolescent Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act.
While the children are sent to children’s remand home, the APMC police will investigate to trace the children’s parents or guardians to unite them with their family.