Broken Promises – #BarAThon Day 7

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A promise he made

A promise she made

To stick together through thick and thin

Days went by

Their love bore a fruit

Am the apple of their eyes

They promised me soon

A promise he broke

A promise she broke

To love each other round the clock

He went his way

And she on hers

No one cared for the apple again

I made a promise to myself that day

Never to make a promise again

Promises are made to be broken

Mom and Dad defined

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I am with Team #CrimsonRush for the #BarAThon from 1st to 7th August 2016.

This post if written for the prompt ‘promise‘ for August 7, 2016.

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The Cobalt Blue Dupatta – #BarAThon Day 6

She was totally excited when Simran Didi told her to get ready as they were going to South Extension for Ruchi Didi’s wedding shopping. It’ll be so much fun. Clothes, jewellery, matching accessories, matching footwear. She was overwhelmed with the thought of it all as she changed into her maroon batik print suit that Simran Didi gave her last year on her godh bharai (baby shower). A tad loosely fitted and ankle long it was for eleven-year old Archana, yet very comfortable. She had altered it and kept it aside for occasions like these.

At Mehrasons, Ruchi Didi selected such wonderful designs and Simran Didi also chose quite a few bangles and earrings. Archana kept gazing around in awe. She was startled when a wailing Monu pulled her braid from his pram. She knew it was time to clean him up and change his Huggies.

After about three hours of trial, Ruchi Didi zeroed down on three beautiful lehengas worth few lakhs. And then they got into another store to purchase clothes to be distributed to important relatives. Archana had heard Ammaji tell Simran Didi to ensure that 54 sarees and 39 suit materials are purchased in total for the relatives. But Simran Didi had purchased 40 unstitched suit materials. Each one was a marvel. The 40th piece is sure going to be for me, Archana thought to herself and smiled as she fed Cerelac to Monu.

At home, Ammaji took the 54 sarees and 39 suit materials into her room, leaving behind the last piece, the best among the lot, on the couch in the living room. Archana was sitting on the freezing floor and feeding milk to Monu with one hand while she ran her hand through the carefully done sequin work on the dupatta of the cobalt blue suit piece.

Ammaji will come back and present it to me”, Archana smiled to herself.

Simran, get that blue suit material lying on the divan stitched according to Ruchi’s fitting for her Chooda ceremony”, she heard Ammaji scream from her room.

After dinner Archana quietly cleaned all the utensils before she finally went and spread her thin rug bed inside the kitchen. Her moist eyes took a long time that night to invite sleep.

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In India, 33 million children in the age group of 0-18 years are working. Most of these children are engaged in the unorganised and un-regulated sector, making demand and availability of cheap labour an easy proposition. On the other hand, high levels of poverty and unemployment, coupled with lack of an adequate social security net, compel parents to allow children to work in hazardous occupations.

The Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2016, which has been amended after 30 years, will not protect these children. Though it bans complete employment of children below the age of 14 years, an exception has been made for children working in family enterprises. This new act is based on the premise that education and work for children can go hand in hand. This argument goes against the spirit of the Right to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) 2009.

~ Failing Our Children, Indian Express

Recommended Reading: 

Activists Say Child Labour Act Locks in Caste-Based Occupations

Up To 2-Year Jail, Fine Of Rs. 50,000 For Child Labour

Child labour by other means

Why The Loopholes In The Child Labour Bill Are Good News For The Middle Class Indian

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I am with Team #CrimsonRush for the #BarAThon from 1st to 7th August 2016.

This post if written for the prompt ‘wishful thinking‘ for August 6, 2016.

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The School Bus: #BarAThon Day 5

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The initial excitement and enthusiasm shown by Mehul during his first few days in school has faded away completely. He doesn’t want to go to school anymore he says. It’s a tough task to get him ready for school every morning. He has become cranky unlike his cheerful self. And he screams at the top of his voice shaking the entire neighbourhood. Thankfully Rahul, Mehul’s older brother, was a sport. He happily hops into the school bus every single day. But then all kids are not the same. After all, he is just three. Aditi thought to herself.

Tring…tring…tring!!!

That must be the milkman.” said Aditi as she buckled up Mehul’s shoes.

“Hurry up! Finish your milk. The bus must be here anytime now.”

While Aditi put the milk pouches into the refrigerator, she heard the school bus honking.

Rahul, Mehul, pick up your bags and water bottles. I’m coming. The school bus is here.”

As she marched out of the kitchen, she saw Rahul getting out of the front door. Mehul must have already gotten into the bus she thought. As Rahul climbed into the bus, Dinesh bhaiya, the cleaner asked, “Mehul is on leave today?

Aditi was taken aback. That boy must be up to one of his pranks as usual, she thought. She ran into the house and started looking for him.

“Mehul, come back here right now or else you will have it from me. The bus is waiting.”

The bus honked for a while and then left.

“Mehul, Mehul…”

She searched the length and breadth of the house but couldn’t find Mehul.

Beads of sweat ran down her forehead. She was now gasping for breath. Abhay is out-of-town and is expected to reach only by tomorrow night. Aditi decided to call him up as she finally realized that Mehul is nowhere to be seen. Tears rolled down her cheek. She ran into the bedroom, picked up her mobile phone and started dialing Abhay.

That’s when she saw his tiny shoes hanging from the loft of the bedroom.

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Mehul”, she heaved a sigh of relief as she disconnected the call.

Has he left?

Who?

Dinesh bhaiya. He is trying to steal my peepee every day. It hurts.

Aditi stood shocked and motionless before she came to terms with what she just heard.

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A report of child abuse is made every ten seconds.

It’s not your child’s fault or crankiness. Look beyond what is visible to the eyes.  

Here’s the scope of the child abuse issue on ChildHelp.org.

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Stop the Abuse Now: Here’s How You Identify Child Abuse and Report it: The Better India
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I am with Team #CrimsonRush for the #BarAThon from 1st to 7th August 2016.

This post if written for the prompt ‘tiny shoes‘ for August 5, 2016.

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