Of the four south Indian states, three states, – Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu – have ubiquitous and rampant child labour. Kerala is the only south Indian state to have been declared as a child labour-free state. Andhra Pradesh is second only to Uttar Pradesh in the extent of its child labour in the country. Karnataka and Tamil Nadu stand at seventh and tenth place in the list, respectively. This is somewhat surprising in the sense that the south Indian states are historically advanced in human development, women’s agency, demographic indicators and governance. Also, since the onset of economic reforms, they have been growing at an economically rapid rate. Why, then, are societies that have relatively high literacy and health indicators, well developed women’s agency and relatively better governance failing to protect their children from being forced into hard labour? This book examines some of these questions with regards to state policy towards the eradication of child labour in Karnataka.