Lahore—Provincial Minister for Labour & Human Resource Raja Ashfaq Sarwar has said that Punjab government will provide basic education and additional skill development along with suitable stipends for the financial assistance of children involved in child labour at workshops, patrol pumps, hotels and restaurants of the province to eliminate child labour in these three sectors according to the directions of Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif.
The IInd phase of Child Labour Survey already conducted by Bureau of Statistics will be completed in 13 different districts of the province along with provincial capital till August 15.
Accompanied by Chief Secretary Punjab Capt. (R) Zahid Saeed, the Minister said this while presiding over first meeting of Steering Committee constituted in this regard. Secretary Labour Nawazish Ali, Secretary Schools Education Abdul Jabbar Shaheen, Secretary Literacy, MD PEF, MD PVTC, CEO The Urban Unit, CEO Punjab Social Protection Authority, DG Bureau of Statistics, DG Labour and other concerned officers attended the meeting.
While briefing about the project, Secretary Labour informed the meeting that according to the statistics collected in the first phase of the Provincial Child Labour Survey, 5420 children under the age of 14 years are working at auto workshops, 71 at patrol pumps while 1636 children are involved in child labour at hotels and restaurants in Sheikhupura, Gujranwala, Khanewal, Bahawalnagar, Hafizabad, Sialkot, Okara, Multan, Rahim Yar Khan and Dera Ghazi Khan.
These children will be enrolled in educational and technical institutes for their formal education and skill training according to a comprehensive roadmap. The third and final phase of child labour survey in the remaining 13 districts will be completed by September 15. Chief Secretary Punjab Capt.(R) Zahid Saeed directed the concerned authorities for mandatory Third-Party Evaluation of the child labour survey conducted in all the districts of the province so as to avoid any lapses regarding facts and figures collected by BOS. He directed to device such a foolproof and acceptable roadmap for the parents who could be convinced to bring their children into the circle of formal education and skill training programme initiated by Punjab government. Minister Labour informed the meeting that an amount of Rs.449 million has been allocated in the current fiscal year for the elimination of child labour project and active NGOs will be engaged for non-formal education of children in all the districts in collaboration with district governments and Punjab Labour Department.