Imagine walking through a typical Indian marketplace – the bustling streets, the packed stores, and the shoppers haggling with street vendors for the best prices. The smell of different flowers and produce is lingering in the air, and every vendor is trying to get your attention.
Squirming through this crowd is a little boy with a tray of empty tea glasses, finishing his daily errands. He strides past a shop, beside which, another boy stands on a high ledge, screaming at the top of his lungs. He is confident that nobody can give you oranges like his for a better price.
While you stand amused by his self-assurance, you suddenly feel something, or rather, someone tugging at your clothes. A little girl looks up at you with eyes full of hope that you will buy a string of her jasmine flowers.
Now let’s think of each of these children and contemplate what we were doing at that age. Most likely, we were getting our basic education in school. And labour isn’t something that we envisioned for children. That makes us wonder – don’t these children have any rights to a better life?
Since 1993, we have been celebrating Human Rights Day on December 10 to commemorate the creation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). This year, the theme is focused on “Equality” and on Article 1 of the UDHR – “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” And that includes every child around the world.
We at BYJU’S want to ensure that we uphold these rights for our children. As a stepping stone, we’re on a mission to reach children in the most remote areas in India to make learning accessible to them.
On Human Rights Day, it is imperative that we look at some of the rights of children, and ensure that we safeguard their future.
Rights of Children in India
Achieving complete equality is an entirely different scenario in India. With a prominent caste system and more importantly, a clear demarcation of society with a poverty line, we hardly see any progress towards this goal. In fact, poverty determines financial positions within society and can completely strip children of their basic rights.
Children in India are often, unfortunately, seen as easy labour – you don’t have to pay them as much, they know little about the world unlike their adult counterparts, and they are often never given a choice when hard times hit them.
For example, when the pandemic struck in 2020, over 160 million children were at risk of child labour. With no access to their safe space in schools, the children were lost with nowhere to go. In addition to their poor familial situations, going for a day of work was a much better option than going to school, just so that they could fill their hungry stomachs.
But does it really have to be this way? Do children have to go to work for a merciless employer, or go to school for a brighter future?
Let’s take a look at the most crucial rights of children in India that can help them lead a better life.
These rights are entitled to every child in the country, without any discrimination with respect to caste, religion, gender, and any other social factors. Unfortunately, not every child knows of these rights and is privileged to exercise them.
Upholding Child Rights
Children are the future of our society. And what better way to create a hopeful society than by helping them become better citizens of tomorrow. For that, we need to make sure that every child is equipped with education and skills for a promising future.
Through our NGO partners, BYJU’S EFA hopes to reach more children with our learning content. We want to ensure that these children have a fair chance in the fight to get ahead. So, we provide our BYJU’S Think & Learn Premium Content to these children, along with any other kind of support that they need.
You can also help us on this mission. Through our BYJU’S Give initiative, you can donate an old device, which will be refurbished, and the money will be used to buy a new device. We will load this device with our content, and then distribute it to a child in need.
In case you don’t have a device, you can also donate to our NGO partners through the Ketto platform, to raise money for devices for children. Again, on these devices, we will load our content, after which they will be distributed to the children.
Let’s Take a Pledge for Our Children
In addition to learning, we as citizens also need to ensure that our children not only have access to a good education but also to rights that lead to a better future.
So, let’s take a pledge today to ensure a brighter tomorrow, for our kids and for our society, to:
If we as responsible citizens can uphold these rights of children, in turn, they can uphold the rights of every adult and child in the future.
So, on Human Rights Day, let’s vow to respect the rights of every child, and thereby the rights of every person in our country. While our personalities and identities can and should be different, let’s ensure a future where we’re all the same, and no societal norms can define us.
Anju is a peace-lover, a video-game addict, and a childhood doodler who imagined that the scribbles were words. This storyteller enjoys a good read, some doodling, and learning new languages. One day, she hopes to write her own story someday, and hopefully in the French language, too! She never loses hope of making the world a better place to live in.
Arya C is a 4th grader who talks about her transition from the US to India and how BYJU`S has helped her at that. She also loves how BYJU`S has made learning a lot more fun.
Meet Sourabh who has a ton to say about his BYJU`S learning experience. His love for quizzes, games and other fun activities are paying off!
V Shriya is a class eight student who has been using BYJU’S for a year now. She shares her experiences with using the app and how it has helped her in improving her academic performance.