A case has been filed against an eight-year-old child with the Rajshahi Labour Court.
The case was filed with the court on February 11 by an inspector of the department of factory and establishment inspection at Paba upazila.
The case was framed against a father and his one son for keeping their shop open on a Friday at Nauhata Bazar in the upazila.
At present, the child named Jobayer and his father, Jonab Ali, are out on bail.
Jonab Ali has a shoe shop called 'J Burmese Shoes' in the market. Sources said that on March 24 evening, Ali received two summons from the Rajshahi Labour Court.
There, the father and the little son were charged with committing an offence under Section 307 of the Bangladesh Labour Act, 2006.
Later, through his lawyer, Ali came to know that he was charged in the case because he kept his shop open on a Friday. His son was also framed in the case because his name and photo were on the shop's signboard.
Ali said, "As the case was for keeping the shop open on a Friday, the case should be against my name. As it is my fault, why is the name of my child included here?"
Other traders and shop owners in the market complained that the inspector of the factory and establishment inspection department made a false report without visiting the field.
In Nauhata Bazar, cases have been registered against 20-25 shops out of 930.
The shop owners claimed the people from the factory and establishment inspection department often harass them and threaten to file cases against them if they do not pay money to them (officers).
Meanwhile, Labour Court lawyer S Alam said that since Jobayer is not the owner of the shop, there could be no case against him just because there was his picture and name on the signboard.
Regarding the incident, Deputy Inspector General of the Department of Factory and Establishment Inspection, Rajshahi, Mahfuzur Rahman Bhuiyan, said, "It was the fault of the inspector concerned. So, we are working sincerely to withdraw the case against the child."
Mahfuzur Rahman said, "If the child's family had contacted us, such incidents would not have happened."
"Or, if he had communicated with us even after the incident, the child's name could have been removed from the case. Now we will fix the case statement," added Mahfuzur.
Meanwhile, Dil Setara, a lawyer at the Rajshahi Judge's Court, said, "There is no law to prosecute a child before the age of 11."
"According to the labour law, even if a child under the age of 11 commits a crime, there is no opportunity to file a case in the child's name. This case has been wrongly filed."
The lawyer further said, "Even if the child's name is removed from the case statement, who will take the responsibility for the criminal offence wrongfully imposed on him?"
When he will grow up, he will have to face a lot of obstacles and complications just for this wrongful incident, she added.