NAC back in action, discusses abolition of child labour

New Delhi: The National Advisory Council was back in action today after a gap of nearly three months with its chairperson Sonia Gandhi presiding over the meeting after recuperating from an undisclosed illness. The meeting deliberated on a number of issues including a policy for street vendors, reforms of the housing scheme for the poor, abolition of child labour and development of minorities.

The last meeting of the advisory panel was held on July 28 and the next meeting was scheduled for August 26. However, the Council could not meet as Gandhi was abroad for over a month for her treatment. Gandhi had returned to Delhi early September but had limited her public appearances and kept away from hectic political schedule as she had been advised rest by doctors treating her.

"The meeting lasted a little over three hours and Gandhi was there throughout," a NAC member said. The Council was apprised by A K Misra, Secretary, Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation of the actions taken by the government on the NAC recommendations on the policy on street vendors.

NAC member Harsh Mander made presentations on reforms to Rajiv Awas Yojana Scheme and abolition of child labour. Another member Farah Naqvi presented the draft recommendations on the Scheduled Castes Sub-Plan, with particular reference to the 12th Plan.

On the policy for street vendors, the NAC had suggested a law to preserve their existing employment and livelihood. It also wanted the policy to provide opportunities for future growth of employment in the growing cities while protecting the interests of the consumers, pedestrians and traffic.