As per the Child Labor (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, a "Child" is defined as any person below the age of 14. Child labor is the practice of having children being engaged in economic activity, on a part- or full-time basis which includes the domestic help too.
Though it is a cognizable criminal offence to employ a child for any work, a large number of children are involved in labor works frequently. The practice deprives children of their childhood, and is harmful to their physical and mental development. It is a common understood that children who work, instead of going to school, remain illiterate fully or partially which limits their ability to contribute to their own well being as well as to the community they live in.
Child labor has long term adverse effects for nation. It is a fact that poverty, lack of good schools and the growth of the informal economy are considered to be the key causes of child labor in India.
But it is not impossible for the government to stop the children involvement in the labor works. If the children are stopped from contributing to the financial condition of the family for few years and let them develop to their potential for education and skills, later, the same child (might will grown as an adult or adolescent), would be in a condition to contribute to the better way or with better wages.
Some other causes of Child Labor in India are cheap wages and accessibility to factories that can produce the maximum amount of goods for the lowest possible price. Also the corruption in the government authorities plays a major role in promoting child labor because laws that should be enforced to prevent child labor are not fully implemented because of the corrupt government.
It is not only a matter of individual to understand, but the government must understand that to keep the economy prospering, a vital criterion is to have an educated workforce equipped with relevant skills for the needs of the industries. The young laborers today, who are not so capable of earning much, can be part of India’s human capital tomorrow. Child labor undoubtedly results in a trade-off with human capital accumulation.
Child labor in India are employed with the majority (70%) in agriculture, some in low-skilled labor-intensive sectors such as sari or carpet weaving or as domestic helpers, which require neither formal education nor training, but more worrying condition is that the some percentage of children are also involved in heavy industry such as coal mining, diamond manufacturing, fireworks manufacturing, or any other hazardous industry. The nation does not only lose future human capitals in this sense, but also lead to the life loss of the country.
The government must understand that there are tremendous economic benefits for developing nations by sending children to school instead of work. Without education, children do not gain the necessary skills such as English or any other language literacy, general education and technical aptitude that will increase their productivity to enable them to secure higher-skilled jobs in future with higher wages that will lift them out of poverty