[Reader-list] A failed child-labour rescue and other dilemmas ofJamia Nagar

Yousuf ysaeed7 at yahoo.com
Sat Nov 6 21:46:23 IST 2010

Dear Tara Prakash
Thanks for your message. Just to respond to the last bit of your mail - Islam doesn't say anything specific about child-labour, probably because it didn't exist then. But Prophet Muhammad was in favour of being kind, gentle and loving with children. He managed to stop the practice of female infanticide which was prevalent in Mecca then. Islam is also against unfair trade and exploitation of the labourers and workers. The Prophet said, "Pay the worker his wages before his sweat gets dried."

Putting this together, one can definitely say that exploitation of children for work is unIslamic. But how dare an outsider (NGO) say this to the community.



--- On Fri, 11/5/10, TaraPrakash <taraprakash at gmail.com> wrote:

> From: TaraPrakash <taraprakash at gmail.com>
> Subject: Re: [Reader-list] A failed child-labour rescue and other dilemmas ofJamia Nagar
> To: "Yousuf" <ysaeed7 at yahoo.com>, "sarai list" <reader-list at sarai.net>
> Cc: "jmi list" <jamia_millia_alumni_directory at yahoogroups.com>
> Date: Friday, November 5, 2010, 9:57 AM

> It's a good question Yousuf but sadly
> you won't find a reasonable answer on this list. The answer
> requires little rational thinking, but of late we are
> reacting emotionally most of the time ont his list.
> I would like to say though that Indian intelligentsia is
> largely complicit in this on going human rights violation.
> There is a hidden property in the definition of human
> rights, that unless it is the state involved it can't be
> called violation.
> If your name suggested that you were Hindu, by now a lot of
> people would have pelted their metaphorical stones at you.
> Yours seems to be a minority voice, we don't give a damn for
> the minorities with in minority. Those who can bark the
> loudest get heard. I hope Jamia Solidarity kind of
> organization will be formed at JMI to help these children.
> I wonder if Islam says anything against child labor. I can
> say for sure though that it does not say anything in favor
> of it.
> Keep asking the tough question. May be you will some day
> get a satisfactory answer.

> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Yousuf" <ysaeed7 at yahoo.com>
> To: "sarai list" <reader-list at sarai.net>
> Cc: "jmi list" <jamia_millia_alumni_directory at yahoogroups.com>
> Sent: Thursday, November 04, 2010 11:23 AM
> Subject: [Reader-list] A failed child-labour rescue and
> other dilemmas ofJamia Nagar
> > Dear all
> > Below is a very unfortunate news from Jamia Nagar, New
> Delhi. On 1st November a team of activists from the NGO
> Bachpan Bachao Andolan along with police officials tried to
> rescue about 60 children working in the sweatshops of zari
> industry in Batla House. They had almost secured these
> children and were taking them away, but their operation
> failed because a mob led by local leaders gathered around
> them and snatched all the children back. They spread the
> rumour that the activists were “conspiring against
> Muslims” and forcefully taking away “their” children.
> The police obviously watched the whole drama without taking
> any action. They were afraid that the event may take a turn
> of communal violence. (http://www.bba.org.in/news/011110.php)
> > 
> > This is a very sad state of affairs, not only for the
> presence of rampant child labour in this area, the defiance
> of the local goons, and the silence of the police. But it is
> more unfortunate because of the inaction and silence of the
> entire intellectual class originating from Jamia. The
> neighbourhood of Jamia Nagar is spread around a central
> university whose many staff, teachers and students reside
> here. Jamia has well known departments and centres for the
> study and training in Social Work, Peace Studies, Minority
> Studies, media studies, Childhood development centre,
> Gandhian studies and host of others (see http://www.jmi.ac.in/centres.htm). But right under the
> lamp there seems darkness.
> > 
> > This is not the first time that the local people used
> the “Muslim” card to thwart any outside attempt to
> improve their lot. Of course there has been a lot of
> insecurity due to the recent incidents of “terrorist
> encounter” and so on. And the people’s hostility and
> anger towards the police and “non-Muslims” can be
> understood in the light of the generalisations made by the
> media and the police about the people of this area. But this
> can also have a different sort of advantage. Pretending the
> fear of local backlash, the authorities have decided in the
> recent months to turn a blind eye to the mass-scale illegal
> construction of apartment buildings in the already narrow
> and cramped lanes, allowing the neighbourhood to become
> utterly inhuman to live. This construction activity and the
> zari factories are all part of the growing monster that this
> area has become. And the religious identity is a good excuse
> to allow the monstrosity to grow larger. Of
> > course, one shouldn’t even mention that Delhi’s
> aspirations of becoming a world class city during the recent
> CW games didn’t touch this area in any way.
> > 
> > I don’t know what can be done about it. But I am
> writing here hoping that at least some discussion or debate
> could ensue in some place to make sense of what is going on.
> But more than a closed-door discussion, this neighbourhood
> needs a street-level debate on how not to use the religious
> identity for petty issues, and how real are these
> “conspiracies against Muslims”.
> > 
> > Any ideas?
> > 
> > Yousuf Saeed
> > 
> > ----
> > 
> > Child Labour Rescue Operation failed due to
> inefficient attitude of administration
> > 
> > On 1st of November 2010, Bachpan Bachao Andolan
> alongwith the labour department, Task Force and Delhi Police
> conducted a raid and rescue operation in their effort to
> eradicate Child Labour in Jamia Nagar, New Delhi. After
> rigorous effort by the activists of BBA more than 200 child
> labourers in zari industry were identified. On this context
> BBA filed a complaint to the District Task Force, D.C South
> on 19th October 2010. After two planning meetings with all
> stakeholders of District Task Force, the raid and rescue
> date was finalised on 1st November 2010. As such the team
> gathered at Kalkaji Police Station at 9:30 a.m to move for
> identified spot headed by SDM, Defence Colony, Mr. P.N. Jha
> and moved towards Batla House and hence started the rescue
> operation.  Children in this area were involved in the
> zari works in miserable condition. They were between 6 years
> to 13 years of age.
> > 
> > The whole process of rescue was done peacefully and
> the teams were successful in rescuing around sixty children
> and they were being taken to the vehicle, but suddenly out
> of nowhere two person named Amanatulla and Samiulla, who
> introduced themselves as some members of a political
> organization, along with the owners of the industry came and
> interrupted the process of rescue operation. These two
> person propagated a communal flavour during conversation
> with our team members and motivated the people by saying
> that these people are against Muslims.
> > 
> > As a result of their interruption the local people
> started gathering and asking questions. The Police Officials
> and the people from the labour department remained standing
> as mere spectators and most of them disappeared from the
> spot. The activists of Bachpan Bachao Andolan were treated
> indecently by the owners and the two so called local leaders
> namely Amanautulla and Samiulla. They went to that extent of
> obstructing the whole process and started to threaten the
> children and forcefully snatched the rescued children away.
> > 
> > In spite of this, the Police and the Labour Department
> did not take any action and at last we had to return back
> empty handed. Shri R.S Chaurasia, Chairperson of BBA, said
> in this context “This happened because of the inefficient
> attitude of the administration but our activists will
> continue this movement against those who are responsible for
> creating this kind of inhuman situation unless all rescued
> children are rescued in that area
> > Now we are going to file complain to the appropriate
> authority to take proper action against who interrupted the
> official work by sustaining the rescue operation and
> forcibly taking away the freed children and thus registering
> cases for kidnapping/ abduction for purpose of slavery
> (Sec.367 IPC), obtaining possession of a minor for an
> illegal/immoral purpose of child labour (Sec. 373 IPC),
> Criminal Assault, obstructing and assaulting a public
> servant from doing his/her duty (Sec. 186, 189 IPC),
> Criminal Intimidation and threat of grievous hurt or death
> (Sec. 506), Criminal Conspiracy etc.
> > 
> > http://www.bba.org.in/news/011110.php
> > 
> > Also see: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/delhi/Mob-forces-rescued-kids-to-return/articleshow/6861743.cms
> > 
> > 
> > 
> > 
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