ADVERTISEMENT

World Day Against Child Labour: Street Kids Share Their Big Dreams

On World Day Against Child Labour, listen to what these children have to say about their lives and their dreams.

Updated
Videos
3 min read
What do the children working on the streets dream about? Hear their story. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
i
ADVERTISEMENT

(This story was first published on 12 June 2016 and has been reposted from The Quint’s to mark the World Day Against Child Labour)

“I want to be a doctor,” said Ajodhya Prasad, an 8-year-old working at a roadside juice stall in Noida, Uttar Pradesh. “I don’t enjoy making juice.”

There are other kids like Ajodhya, employed in laborious jobs, who wish to break away from their current roles and be someone they dream to be. So what are their dreams? Hear them out.

As soon as we started talking to Ajodhya, and he shared his dream of becoming a doctor and studying further, his uncle interjected. “He’s on his school break and therefore just helping me out,” Ajodhya’s uncle told us. “Nobody’s going to be an officer or a doctor. They can work hard and do other work,” he added.

Ajodhya Prasad stands at his juice-counter. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/<b>TheQuint</b>)
Ajodhya Prasad stands at his juice-counter. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/TheQuint)

Evident in Ajodhya’s uncle’s words were the harsh realities of a million other under-aged, yet overworked children. Some of them toiling in the sun for over 8-10 hours. We talked to a few more children.

ADVERTISEMENT
Sunny sells water for Rs 2 per glass. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/<b>TheQuint</b>)
Sunny sells water for Rs 2 per glass. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/TheQuint)

Sunny saw a few ‘businessmen’ on TV and has been hooked ever since. He likes their uber-rich and comfortable lifestyle. Sunny also likes sitting at his roadside cart because he can see his favourite cars from there. He says he tries to study whenever he can. When quizzed on who’ll sell water here if he becomes a businessman, Sunny responded with a smile, “My servants will manage this.”

Naresh sells pen worth Rs 200 in a day. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/<b>TheQuint</b>)
Naresh sells pen worth Rs 200 in a day. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/TheQuint)

Naresh almost fought for my attention. He sells pens in Connaught Place, New Delhi. Selling at Rs 5 per pen, he manages to earn Rs 200 in a day. Whatever he earns, he gives it to his mother. Naresh dreams to be an officer, because an officer gets ‘money’. He doesn’t go to school, but says he’ll become an officer when he grows up.

ADVERTISEMENT
Sanjay sells pens for Rs 20 per piece. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/<b>TheQuint</b>)
Sanjay sells pens for Rs 20 per piece. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/TheQuint)

Sanjay is street-smart. He started crying when I refused to buy any more pens, but the very next moment he started pouting for the camera, then started crying again. Sanjay also sells pen, and thinks “everybody sells water when they grow up” so he has a similar dream of selling water one day at the bus stop.

Dildaar polishes shoes for a living. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/<b>TheQuint</b>)
Dildaar polishes shoes for a living. (Photo: Sanjoy Deb/TheQuint)

Dildaar wants to become the next Yo Yo Honey Singh, but he’s a bit camera shy. His friends told us that he’s a big comedian, but he told us no jokes. Dildaar earns somewhere between Rs 400-500 everyday by polishing boots. And yes, he can sing too.

ADVERTISEMENT

How did you find these stories? Have something to add? Share your views in the comments below.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

Published: 
Speaking truth to power requires allies like you.
Become a Quint Insider
500
1800
5000

or more

PREMIUM

3 months
12 months
12 months
Check Insider Benefits
ADVERTISEMENT
Stay Updated

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.

Join over 120,000 subscribers!
ADVERTISEMENT