Twenty-six children working as labourers at the factory of a popular biscuit brand were rescued in Raipur, Chhattisgarh, PTI reported on Saturday quoting police. The children were rescued on Friday and sent to a government shelter home.

Vidhansabha Police Station House Officer Ashwani Rathore said a government task force received information that minors were employed allegedly at Parle-G’s factory in Amasivni area in Raipur. The task force searched the factory and rescued the children.

Most of the children are between 12 years and 16 years old and belong to Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Odisha and Bihar. Rathore said a case was filed against the factory owner under the Juvenile Justice Act based on a complaint registered by Women and Child Development Department officials.

District Child Protection Officer Navneet Swarnkar said on Saturday that the task force was set up to conduct a drive to mark World Day Against Child Labour on June 12. “As part of the campaign, a total of 51 child labourers were rescued in the last six days in the district,” he told PTI.

Swarnkar said the children will undergo counselling and action will be taken against the factory’s management. The parents of the children have been informed, he said.

According to the statements given by the children, they worked from 8 am to 8 pm and received wages ranging from Rs 5,000 to Rs 7,000 per month, Swarnkar said.

Sandip Kumar Rao, state coordinator of NGO Bachpan Bachao Andolan, said the Child Welfare Committee should add Sections 3, 3A, 14 of Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Act and Section 370 (buying or disposing of any person as a slave) of Indian Penal Code in the case. The NGO was part of the rescue operation.