Election Commission orders parties to not hire minors

NEW DELHI (TIP): In keeping with the directions of the Election Commission, the chief electoral officer of Delhi has issued directions to all political parties and election officers to ensure that children under 18 years of age are not engaged as laborers during preparations for the Lok Sabha polls.

Issuing the orders, CEO Vijay Dev cited the provisions of the Plan of Action for Abolition of Child Labour in Delhi and the high court judgment on child labour. The circular states EC had issued instructions in May 2009, making it clear that children must be kept away from various hazardous and nonhazardous activities during election process.

“Employment of children below 14 years of age in specific occupations such as transport of goods is considered unsafe and harmful as per the Child Labour (Prohibition and regulation) Act, 1986,” the circular states. The Delhi Commission of Protection of Child Rights, too, had brought to the notice of the CEO office in the run-up to the December assembly polls the legal provisions to ensure that children are not forced to work as cheap labour by candidates.

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