city anchor: Construction workers’ wards get a taste of school life
- Spot-fixing: Petition in SC seeks stay on IPL matches, demands SIT probe
- India, China call for end to incursion issue, sign 8 deals to boost ties
- Sanjay Dutt spends restless nights as officials yet to decide on his jail
- Aarushi murder case: Rajesh Talwar claims he was asleep when killings took place
- Yahoo! says will acquire Tumblr for $1.1 bn, eyes billion visitors mark
A group of children aged between three and six were reciting poems inside a makeshift classrooms in a SRA building at Sion's Pratiksha Nagar. These are not regular schoolgoing kids but children of construction workers who have been given the opportunity to experience school life for free.
Mumbai Mobile Creches, a non-profit organisation, has been working towards care and education of thousands of children at building construction sites for the past four decades. The organisation not only educates these kids but also provides them with food daily.
"Today, with 26 centres across Mumbai, Navi Mumbai,Thane and every year we reach out to around 5,000 children... from infants to age 14," said Vrushali Naik, programme co-ordinator of Mumbai Mobile Creches (MMC).
Children running around construction sites is as common a sight as the stacks of bricks and cement. Apart from endangering their own lives, they also divert the attention of their parents from the labour-intensive work at the site. Though the Building and Other Construction Workers Act, 1996, mandates creches at all large construction sites with at least 50 women, this has not been implemented in all states.
Asha Banmude, a construction worker from Beed district, came to Mumbai in 2005, She had to take her son Aniket to work every day which distracted her from work and she was worried for her son all the time. "In 2007, I came across Mobile creche. Now, I have two kids Aniket (8) and Anisha (4). I leave them at the Balwadi every day and go to work without any worry as they take good care of them and educate them as well."
"We can work more when kids go to school. However, we cannot afford school fees. The Balwadi teachers take good care of our children and ensure they learn well. They even provide medicines to our children that too fro free," said another construction worker Anandi Roy.
- Former Ranji player among 3 more held
- Rajasthan Royals to file FIR against tainted trio
- If found guilty, BCCI to ask ICC to erase Sreesanth records
- Top cops among 42 named in death of blast accused
- Manmohan-Li talks: PM takes tough line on incursion issue
- Security forces blame Maoists, villagers say CoBRA man was killed in 'friendly fire'