I see the world where every child is free, safe and educated: Satyarthi
It is with this belief and vision that Kailash Satyarthi, Nobel Peace Laureate (2014) and a human rights activist from India, has been at the forefront of the global movement to end child slavery and exploitative child labour for over 35 years now. He has sought to eradicate all forms of violence against children including sexual abuse and trafficking. He has rescued over 80,000 child slaves and developed a successful model for their education and rehabilitation.
Mr Satyarthi is now embarking on a historic Bharat Yatra to spearhead the fight against child trafficking and sexual abuse across the country. The yatra will pass through 22 states and union territories over 35 days covering over 11,000 kilometres. It will start from Kanyakumari in the south, stretching to western India and reaching Delhi. The Yatra on the Eastern side will commence from Guwahati, while Srinagar will flag off the northern stretch. All these stretches will culminate in the national capital of Delhi, on the 16th of October this year.
Mr. Satyarthi has been preparing for many months, leading up to the Yatra and has met faith leaders and religious heads in New Delhi & Ajmer who have assured him of their support wherever his campaigns go. He has also met corporates leaders from PayTM, Godrej,BSE etc. and has received overwhelming response for his fight against child sexual abuse and trafficking. Mr. Satyarthi wishes to involve all possible stakeholders in the Bharat Yatra, as only then will India witness a true revolution and a change in the mindset of the people.
Throughout the duration of the Yatra, grassroot programs will witness participation of school and college students, along with leaders from diverse social, cultural, religious, media and corporate organisations. Each day, thousands of residents would join them in solidarity and support. The programs will use theatre, music and folklore in local languages to create mass awareness against violence inflicted on children.
To mobilise the support of leaders across the world, Mr Satyarthi and his Foundation, Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation, brought together Nobel laureates and leaders on a single platform, to harness they’re collective intellectual, moral and political will to build a child-free world. The Laureates and Leaders for Children Summit held in December 2016, concentrated on building a strong moral platform for protecting all children from violence and ensuring the world where all children are free to be children. This Summit sought to amplify the collective leadership and moral authority of Nobel laureates across different fields, world leaders and champions of children’s rights. Some of the Noble Laureate who was part of the Summit is The Dalai Lama, Her Excellency Julia Gillard, Prime Minister of Australia (2010-13), Mr Angel Gurria, Secretary General, OCED, Princess Charlene of Monaco and Princess Laurentin of the Netherlands.
The strength of Mr Satyarthi’s passion lies in the belief that youth across the world are looking to change the mindset of people and the norms of law to protect and nurture children. He firmly believes in children’s freedom from all kinds of exploitation- be it sexual, physical or mental, and is determined to continue to fight for their safety, security and happiness, till violence against children is eradicated across the world.