Top court bans child workers in circuses in India

April 20, 2011 - 0:0

NEW DELHI (AP) -– India's top court Monday banned the employment of children in circuses and ordered the government to rescue and rehabilitate those currently working there.

India's Child Labor Act bans employment of children younger than 14 but allowed circuses to employ them until six months ago. The practice continued, but the Supreme Court ruling mandates enforcement of the law.
The court ruled on a petition from the Save the Children Movement filed in 2006 after the group studied children in circuses and found such employment often led to child trafficking.
Bhuvan Ribhu, a lawyer working for the group, said the court directed the government to conduct raids on circuses to rescue children and chalk out a rehabilitation plan for them.
Activists say the number of children working in circuses in India could be in the thousands.