Save the children

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Pakistan is faced with the problem of about 3.3 million children engaged in various forms of labour. Almost 73 per cent of the workers, 2.4 million are boys and 27 per cent are girls. About 2.9 million children work in rural areas and 400,000 in urban areas.
At a provincial level about 60 per cent of the child labour is found in Punjab, followed by NWFP, which has 1.06 million young workers, Sindh has 298,000 and Balochistan has 14,000. Some other sources estimate that child workers in Pakistan are about 11 million.
It’s high time that we start combating the menace of child labour. Legislation and policies are urgently required to ameliorate the problem.
Strategies to combat child labour include mobilising a broad alliance of partners to enhance capacities of relevant stakeholders; increasing awareness and social mobilisation; improving the legislation and setting up implementation mechanisms; setting up area-based sustainable models for withdrawal and prevention of child labour; scaling up the child labour monitoring system and empowering the families whose children have been afflicted by this problem.
SHER MUHAMMAD KHAN
Multan

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