I saw this young boy at the Connaught place in New Delhi which is is one of the largest financial, commercial and business centers in Delhi. He is eight years old and lives at the suburbs and comes to town with his brother. He had a shoeshine kit with scenes from Bollywood movies and charges 10-20 rupees for polishing shoes.
On a positive note this boy is still with his family and is not doing a hazrdous job.
The 2001 national census of India estimated the total number of child labour, aged 5–14, to be at 12.6 million. Child labor problem is not unique to India; worldwide, about 215 million children work, many full-time.
In 2001, out of a 12.6 million, about 0.12 million children in India were in a hazardous job. UNICEF estimates that India with its larger population, has the highest number of labourers in the world under 14 years of age.
There are multiple factors for this such as poverty, caste system & landlords in villages forcing people to go to cities in search of a better life. Once they are in a city slum, lack of schooling and poverty pushes them into work. In a country like India with a massive population, it will be unlikely that child labourers are going to disappear anytime soon. Ironically even the west with its massive welfare bills are struggling to cope and cuts are on their way!
Critiques | Translate
MadelinaVizoso (64) 2012-11-01 10:11
Poor child, working as an adult.
mmohan (744) 2012-11-03 12:59
I like the expression on his face, your note is informative and thought provoking.
tyro (24778) 2012-11-08 2:03
You have given us a very interesting and also a very worrying note about child labour worldwide but, more specifically, in India. And a lovely photograph to illustrate it.
Perhaps his appearance belies his underlying character, but this young lad looks just so innocent as he slaves away polishing someone's shoe with only the oldest and most basic of tools which he obviously carries around over his shoulder in an old but colourful box.
You have caught a lovely doleful look in his eyes as he looks upwards at you and the composition is excellent.
But I've done a very quick workshop for you - see what you think. I hope you don't mind my playing around with this fine picture but I thought that the stuff at the very top of the picture distracted a little from the boy himself, so I've cropped and cloned that out. Then I increased the contrast just a little to add a little "punch". And I selected his eyes to try to brighten the lovely "catchlights" in his eyes which you have caught so well. I did the same with his hair to try to brighten the reflection on that too. And, because I'd cropped the picture a little, I added a simple frame to "use up" the extra pixels.
See what you think!
But a fine picture and, together with your note, a fine comment on life in India.