Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

Child Labor in India

Sold by your parents. Beaten, starved. Laboring for hours. These are just some of the things that come from child labor. One girl faced every single one of those conditions in India. Her parents had sold her to job placement agency, as some very destitute families will do in India, which sold her to a couple. (Yardley). India has the largest number of urban and rural child workers in the world (United States Department of Labor). Although child labor helps people in India, it is a huge problem that is immoral and inhumane.

One of the main reasons child labor occurs in India is poverty (it happens in india). Parents sell their children so they can have enough money to live. Another reason child labor happens in India is the growing gap between the rich and the poor (Child Line). Children could also be abducted and sold into slavery (United States Department of Labor). Still more reasons this happens are the Lack of social security, basic needs being made private, and bad schooling (Child Line). Without good social security more people become poor leading to selling their children and the children being sold to employers. With basic needs being privatized people will begin to die making the family poorer leading to selling their kids into child labor and so on. Finally without a good education, finding a job will become hard either leading to the child dropping out of school to find a job now to help their family, or causing their parents to be poor and sell them.

The effects of child labor can be very dangerous to an underage worker. Some of the effects include greater risks of hearing loss, a much greater need for food and clean water, and also a higher chemical absorption rate (Child Labor Public Education Project). Children who work run a greater risk of hearing loss because the loud noises of the machines can cause permanent damage to their eardrums. The children in factories aren’t always given food therefore they need food and water (Child Line). Children working in the brassware industry constantly inhale toxic chemical fumes from applying chemicals to the wares causing them to have a lower tolerance for chemicals (United States Department of Labor).

There are several products made by children in India including bidis (hand-rolled cigars), textiles, fireworks, and gems. In the bidi industry children are used because of their small hands needed to roll up the small cigars (YGOY Health Community). Many girls in the textile industry are treated as if they were in jail as they try to save money for their dowry or help their parent’s income (ODAM). These girls are promised a lump sum of an amount between 700 and 800 dollars after three years, but they are often not paid or given faulty checks (ODAM). In one factory in India children stuffing powder into fireworks are well aware of the dangers that come with producing them, but if they didn’t work they wouldn’t be able to eat because their families are so poor (Gupta). When working in the gem industry, children have to drill holes, polish, and string gems for 8 hours with a salary of 50 rupees (about $1.70) a month.

I personally think that child labor is something akin to slavery. Many of the children are forced to work long hours every day for minimal pay, and the work they do is pretty dangerous. Some of the industries in India that need child labor force children to work for no pay. The food received by the children is less than stellar, and the conditions they work in are absolutely horrible. If I could work my will on every idiot who believes that using young children in a working environment like that, then there would be far less use of children as workers in the near future.

Child labor is something that India’s economy thrives on. Without the huge child labor force there then many of the things we see and use every day would be super expensive or not there all. Although there are laws against child labor in India, they are not strongly enforced because the economy relies so much on it. Child labor is wrong and immoral, but there is not likely to be a decline in it any time soon in India.


Child Labor Public Education Project. Health Issues . n.d. 6 December 2012.

Child Line. Child Labour. n.d. 6 December 2012.

Gupta, Saibal. Kids making crackers despite ban on child labour. 12 October 2006. 6 December 2012.

it happens in india. Child Labor in India. 16 December 2011. 6 December 2012.

ODAM. Child Labour. n.d. 6 December 2012.

United States Department of Labor. "India." n.d. DOL Corporation Website. 6 December 2012.

Yardley, Jim. "Maid's Cries Cast Light on Child Labor in India." The New York Times 4 April 2012. website.

YGOY Health Community. Beedis and Child Labor in India. n.d. 6 December 2012.

Join the Discussion

This article has 1 comment. Post your own!

cutie1998 said...
Mar. 7 at 10:19 am:
it is a great thing to post such a attaractive issue on the net. hope everyone read this and help the children from this. you guyzzzzzz are going awesome.......Bst of luck...... More power to you all
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
Site Feedback