NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court today modified one of its order on welfare and rehabilitation of sex workers on the Centre’s submissions that the last year’s order gave an impression that it seeks to legalize prostitution. Allaying the Centre’s fears that it was giving its seal of approval to prostitution, a special bench of justices Altamas Kabir and Gyan Sudha Misra modified its earlier order, saying “the modification shall not be construed that by this order any encouragement is being given to prostitution.”
Modifying its earlier order, the bench clarified that it would only examine the “conditions conducive for sex workers to work with dignity in accordance with provisions of Article 21 of the Constitution.” It added it was keen that sex workers should be given opportunity to avail rehabilitation measures of the government and other agencies for them.While adjudicating a petition for rehabilitation of former sex workers, the apex court had on July 19, 2011 framed three terms of reference.
Appointing a broad-based panel to look into the matter, the apex court by its July 2011 order had formulated three questions related to prevention of trafficking, rehabilitation of sex workers who wish to leave the sex work and “conditions conducive for sex workers who wish to continue working as sex workers with dignity.”On the Centre’s submission that the third term gave an impression that prostitution has been sought to be legalised, the apex court modified it to read as “conducive for sex workers to live with dignity in accordance with the provisions of Article 21 of the Constitution”.
“The above modification shall not be construed that by this order any encouragement is being given to prostitution,” the bench added. Justice Sudha also observed, “While we do not wish to encourage sex trade we would emphasise rehabilitation of sex workers for which we had taken the issue. “We wish to add although the sex workers have right to live with dignity. There has to be collective endeavours by courts and sex workers to give up flesh trade in case they are given alternative platform on employment.”
- Sex workers can’t operate in any manner, Centre tells SC (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Sex workers can’t operate in any manner: Centre (ibnlive.in.com)
Barge told the TOI that he received a tip-off the minor girls were forced into prostitution in some brothels in the Budhwar Peth area. “We raided a brothel in a new building in Budhwar Peth and rescued four women including two minors,” Barge said.
He said that one of the minors was from Bangladesh. The police arrested two women for allegedly running brothel. “They have been identified as Puja Tamang and Maili Tamang,” Barge said. Barge said that the police also raided another brothel in the Sapna building in Budhwar Peth and rescued 10 women including four minors. “We have arrested three suspects in this regard. They have been identified as Shankara Nayak, Kajal Sardar and Bilkis Shaikh all from Sapna building,” Barge said.
Separate cases have been registered against the suspects with the Faraskhana police station. The investigating team comprised police sub-inspector Ashwini Jagtap, police constables Dattatreya Nikam, Kernath Kamble, Shashikant Shinde, Ajit Dhumal, Sandip Holkar and Sohanlal Chutele.
- Girl trafficker sentenced to 170 years in jail (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
NEW DELHI: Eight girls from Assam, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh have been rescued from four placement agencies in east Delhi allegedly involved in human trafficking. Four persons, including a woman, have been arrested.
“There was a tip-off from an NGO, Shakti Vahini, and we raided the four placement agencies, Babita Enterprises, India Maid Bureau, Deepika Placement Agency and Mission Welfare Society,” said Sanjay Kumar Jain, deputy commissioner of police (crime). The arrested have been identified as Ravinder Yadav, Pradeep Toppo, Vimal Kerketta and Babita, all residents of Shakurpur in east Delhi.
Four of the rescued girls are from Assam, one from Chhattisgarh and three from Jharkhand. “The girls were terrified and have disclosed that the placement agencies had employed them as domestic help across Delhi. When they wanted to go home, the agencies had detained them and withheld their earnings. These placement agencies wanted them to employ further as domestic helps
,” Jain said. After medical examination, the girls were sent to the children’s home for girls at Nirmal Chhaya in Hari Nagar. Ten girls, who were lured on the pretext of employment in the capital, were also rescued from GB Road brothels in central Delhi. The girls in the age group of 15-18 years were rescued from GB Road brothels following a tip-off by Rescue Foundation, an NGO. Nine of them are from West Bengal and one from Bihar.
“They all belong to poor families and were lured on the pretext of providing them employment in Delhi,” Devesh Srivastava, Additional Commissioner of Police (Central), said. The raid was conducted after the NGO informed police that a a minor girl who was missing from 24 Pargana in West Bengal is confined at Kotha No- 58, GB Road. Out of ten, nine are residents of West Bengal while one is from Bihar.
US department of state’s report paints gloomy picture for region
Guwahati, June 20: A US government report has painted a gloomy picture of human trafficking in the Northeast.The US state department’s 2012 Trafficking in Persons Report, released by secretary of state Hillary Clinton yesterday, said there had been a rise in women from the region being subjected to “servile marriages” in states with low female-to-male child sex ratios such as Haryana and Punjab. According to the report, girls from the Northeast are also subjected to transactional sexual exploitation in West Asia under the guise of temporary marriages.
The report blames corrupt law enforcement officers in India of facilitating the movement of sex trafficking victims besides protecting suspected traffickers and brothel-keepers from enforcement of the law by taking bribes from sex trafficking establishments and sexual services from victims. “Some policemen allegedly continue to tip off sex and labour traffickers to impede rescue efforts,” the report said.
The arrest of a BSF jawan posted at Aizawl for trafficking a minor girl from Mizoram to Rewari district in Haryana in September 2011 also finds mention in the report, which says the accused jawan has been out on bail since December 2011. The report has put India among Tier 2 countries whose governments do not fully comply with minimum standards but are making significant efforts to bring themselves into compliance.
“The government of India does not fully comply with the minimum standards for elimination of trafficking. However, it is making significant efforts to do so. The ministry of home affairs continues to establish anti-human trafficking units which are responsible for combining law enforcement and rehabilitation efforts,” the report said.
It added that there had been numerous reports about sex trafficking victims being rescued by police-NGO teams and increased reports about inter-state coordination among anti-human trafficking units that resulted in the victims being rescued. “In one case, the Manipur, Rajasthan, and Kerala anti-human trafficking units collaborated in the rescue of 33 trafficked children,” the report said.
Welcoming the report, Rishi Kant of Shakti-Vahini, a Delhi-based NGO working against trafficking, told The Telegraph that a large number of girls, mainly minors, from the Northeast was being regularly trafficked and forced to marry in states like Haryana and Punjab.
“The registration of trafficking cases by the police in the Northeast has risen, but the government must ensure that guilty persons are convicted in court and for that the judiciary also needs to be sensitised,” he said.
The anti-human trafficking unit of Assam police has recovered many girls from Hissar district in Haryana with help from Shakti Vahini and has been rewarded recently by the Union home ministry for its efforts. The report also quoted a senior government official saying that while trafficking rescues and registration of cases have increased, convictions remain low in the country. It added that the government continued to make progress in its law enforcement efforts to combat human trafficking in 2011, but concerns remain over the uneven enforcement of trafficking laws and alleged official complicity.
- Trafficking in Persons Report 2012 lauds the role of Anti Human Trafficking Units (AHTU) (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Police crack down on human traffickers (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Police crack down on human traffickers (shaktivahini.wordpress.com)
- 1500 Assam kids missing in a year (shaktivahini.wordpress.com)
- Raids on trains from east and northeast to curb Girl Trafficking (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Assam lags in victim relief (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Performance of Anti Human Trafficking Units (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Raids on trains from east and northeast to curb Girl Trafficking (shaktivahini.wordpress.com)
Government of India
Ministry of Home Affairs
Dated 1st May, 2012
Sub: Advisory on preventing and combating human trafficking in India – dealing with foreign nationals.
The undersigned is directed to refer to this Ministry’s Office Memorandum No. 15011/6/2009-ATC (Advisory) dated 09.09.2009 on the above mentioned subject (copy enclosed). It has come to the notice of this Ministry that foreign nationals are associated in some instances of human trafficking among women and children.
2. Further to the detailed procedure outlined in the above mentioned Office Memorandum, it has been decided with the approval of the competent authority that in cases of foreign nationals who are apprehended in connection with human trafficking, the State Governments / UT Administrations may follow the following procedure : -
(i) Immediately after a foreign national is apprehended on charges of human trafficking, a detailed interrogation/investigation should be carried out to ascertain whether the person concerned is a victim or a trafficker.
(ii) The victims and the persons actually involved in human trafficking should be treated differently by the police authorities. This is in line with the SAARC Convention which advocates a victim-centric approach.
(iii) Missions/Posts in India may be informed of the arrest/detention of the foreign national by the concerned state or other authorities through CPV division in the Ministry of External Affairs(MEA) or the concerned territorial Division in MEA.
(iv) It is seen that in general, the foreign victims of human trafficking are found without valid passport or visa. If, after investigation, the woman or child is found to be a victim, she should not be prosecuted under the Foreigners Act. If the investigation reveals that she did not come to India or did not indulge in crime out of her own free will, the State Government / UT Administration may not file a charge sheet against the victim. If the chargesheet has already been filed under the Foreigners Act and other relevant laws of the land, steps may be taken to withdraw the case from prosecution so far as the victim is concerned. Immediate action may be taken to furnish the details of such victims to the Ministry of External Affairs (Consular Division), Patiala House, New Delhi so as to ensure that the person concerned is repatriated to the country of her origin through diplomatic channels.
(v) During the interim period, pending repatriation, the victim may be taken care of in an appropriate children’s home, or “Ujjawala” home or appropriate shelter home either of the State Government concerned or of any NGO aided by the Government of India / State Government.
(vi) If the investigation reveals that the person is actually a trafficker, he/she may be charge-sheeted under the Immoral Trafficking Prevention Act and the Foreigners Act and due process of law should be followed in such cases.
(vii) In order to ensure better conviction rates of perpetrators of the crime of trafficking, prosecution should be based on documentary, forensic and material evidence. State Governments are advised to encourage the law enforcement agencies to investigate the cases in a manner that they are able to build fool proof cases against the traffickers, so that convictions can be guaranteed. Use of fast-track courts and video conferencing to the extent possible also need to be ensured. Please refer to para 7 of the enclosed Advisory dated 9.9.2009.
3. All other instructions contained in this Ministry’s Advisory dated 09.09.2009 including reporting to the Anti Human Trafficking Nodal Cell in MHA will be applicable in the case of foreign nationals associated with human trafficking, whether they are women or children(children means both boys and girls upto 18 years of age).
4. You are requested to issue suitable directions to all concerned under intimation to this Ministry.
5. The receipt of this Office Memorandum may kindly be acknowledged.
Joint Secretary to the Govt. of India
The Chief Secretaries/Principal Secretaries/ Secretary (Home) of all State Governments and Union Territory Administrations.
Copy for information and necessary action to:-
(i) The DGs / IGs (In-charge of Prisons) /- All State Governments/ UTs
(ii) Sri Sandeep Goel, Joint Commissioner(Crime), 3rd Floor, Police Station Kamla Market, Delhi.
(iii) Ministry of Women and Child Development(Smt. Aditi Ray, Senior Economic Advisor), Shastri Bhavan, New Delhi.
(iv) Secretary, Ministry of Labour, Shram Shakti Bhavan, New Delhi
(v) Secretary, Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Shastri Bhavan, New Delhi.
(vi) Secretary, Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs, Akbar Bhavan, New Delhi.
(vii) Ministry of External Affairs:
(a) Addl. Secretary(PV) (b) JS(Consular) (c) JS(BSM)
(viii) Chairperson, National Commission for Women, 4, Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Marg, New Delhi.
(ix) Chairperson, National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, 5th Floor, Chandralok Building, Janpath, New Delhi.
(x) Chairperson, National Human Rights Commission, Copernicus Marg, New Delhi.
(xi) Director General, NCRB, R.K.Puram, New Delhi.
(xii) Director General, BPR&D, New Delhi.
(xiii) Director General, Border Security Force, New Delhi.
(xiv) Director, CBI, New Delhi..
(xv) AS(CS) / JS(CS) / JS(UT) / JS(NE) / JS(K), MHA, North Block, New Delhi.
Joint Secretary to the Govt. of India
Making it clear that the current attempt of the Supreme Court looking into the various questions involving sex workers and their rehabilitation does not include ‘institutionalizing or regularizing’ the profession, a division bench comprising of Justice Altamas Kabir and Justice Gyan Sudha Misra today said that there should not be any apprehension that the Apex Court was trying to ‘legalize’ the trade.
“We are not into institutionalizing or regularizing the profession… There should not be any apprehension that we are trying to legalize the trade,” the bench said clarifying the scope of the current effort in which the court has sought the involvement of various Ministries, NGOs, legal service associations, and others who would collectively develop a ‘composite plan’ to protect the rights of the sex workers.
The bench today directed to hold a meeting of all parties on May 6 to discuss the problems and issues of the Sixth Interim Report, which has been filed by the Committee appointed by the court, for looking into the various facets involving sex workers and their rehabilitation. The bench asked for identification of problems and working out solutions to the issues.
The apex court constituted panel is headed by senior counsel Pradip Ghosh and includes senior counsel Jayant Bhushan, Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee, Usha Multipurpose Cooperative Society and Saima Hasan, founder of Roshni as its members. The court’s order came after it took suo motu cognizance of the problems faced by sex workers while dealing with a sex workers’ murder case.
Chandigarh: Haryana Police claimed to have unearthed a sex racket in Faridabad with the arrest of five women and two men. Police had got information that a prostitution racket was being run from the ground floor of a house in sector-3, Faridabad. It was revealed that a lady namely Sonu, who lived in the house on rent, had been allegedly lending the house for prostitution purposes.
- Prostitution racket busted; seven held (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Model rescued from flesh trade racket (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Mumbai Police bust alleged prostitution racket, rescue ten bar girls (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Mumbai: Flourishing Prostitution Racket in Guise of Dance Troupes? (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Seven held for sleaze (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Four booked for forcing girl into prostitution (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Sex racket busted, 11 held (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Job agent held for running sex racket, misusing photos of women applicants (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
‘Beautiful Thing’ by Sonia Faleiro – By DWIGHT GARNER - Published: February 29, 2012 NEW YORK TIMES
Leela, the young exotic dancer at the center of “Beautiful Thing,” is a genius of vulgarity. In this intimate and valuable book of literary reportage by Sonia Faleiro nearly every word out of Leela’s mouth is spit like a cartoon hornet. Few of these sentences, alas, are publishable here.
Nineteen when Ms. Faleiro met her, Leela was the highest paid bar dancer in a seedy Mumbai club called Night Lovers. She wore an “imported-padded” bra and had butterscotch streaks in her long hair; she sneered at most of the men who paid to watch her. When they’d toss small denomination rupee notes, she’d mock them: “Is this all you think I’m worth? Why shouldn’t I commit suicide? Why shouldn’t I stick my head into an oven?”
Leela’s way with a dirty phrase seems to infect Ms. Faleiro, a gifted young Indian-born writer who is previously the author of a novel called “The Girl” (2006). Her language, like dots of colored light pinging from a smudgy mirrored ball, casts an intoxicating if unsettling glow.
About one aggressive man at Night Lovers, the author observes: “Leela’s customer stank of vodka-chicken-onion-chili-lemon and clearly he was no hi-fi-super-badiya-tiptop type. He had no upbringing.” Plenty of Ms. Faleiro’s best sentences are unpublishable too.
“Beautiful Thing” is a book about Mumbai’s notorious sex industry, and the news it brings about young women’s lives will break your heart several times over. Most are from small villages. Most were raped repeatedly when young, often by relatives. Many were sold to other men.
Leela ran away to Mumbai when she was 13, after her father tried to film her nude and in suggestive poses, hoping she could be a porn actress. When she protested, he had her arrested, and she was raped by policemen. She fled from the general horror inflicted on India’s poor young women, in search of a better life.
Dancing at Night Lovers was, socially and financially, a step up for her. Bar dancers ranked above other sex workers, Ms. Faleiro explains, “because selling sex wasn’t a bar dancer’s primary occupation and because when she did sell sex she did so quietly and most often under her own covers.”
What Leela wants, Leela rarely gets. She dreams of a Bollywood career, and of a good marriage. She’s forced instead to live by her taut body and her even-more-taut wits. “She squeezed the men in her life like they were lemons,” Ms. Faleiro writes, “and once she was through, she discarded them like rinds.”
Leela is aware of the limited but genuine power she wields. “They think I dance for them,” she declares of her customers. “But really, they dance for me.”
Ms. Faleiro’s book has a resonance that belies its compact size. She focuses on only a few characters: Leela, some of her dancer friends and Shetty, the wily owner of Night Lovers. If “Beautiful Thing” were to be made into a film, Shetty would be played by whomever is the current Bollywood equivalent of Paul Giamatti.
With a few strokes Ms. Faleiro conjures a world, and it is mostly a world of hurt and confusion. She spent five years researching and writing this book, and its lessons are presented frankly. “Poverty eventually made criminals of everyone,” she writes of the women and the shady men in their milieu. Noting Mumbai’s unforgiving nature, she says, “Naïveté was fair prey and beauty unguarded deserved what it got.”
In another writer’s hands Leela’s story might have become an op-ed tract. But Ms. Faleiro’s book is not a dirge. For one thing Leela is simply too quirky and alive on the page. She might be wealthy from the tips she makes, but the author catches her in unguarded moments.
“She loved not paying for her pleasures,” Ms. Faleiro writes. “After the dance bar closed for the night, Leela would waltz from table to table helping herself to half-smoked cigarettes. She would press her cherry-red lips to abandoned beer bottles.”
There’s a feminist spark in Ms. Faleiro’s portrayal of these women. One who was raped repeatedly before the age of 10 says to her, “I decided that if this was going to keep happening to me, then at least I should profit from it, I should eat from it.”
Leela urges the author not to pity her. “When you look at my life, don’t look at it beside yours,” she implores. “Look at it beside the life of my mother and her mother and my sisters-in-law who have to take permission to walk down the road.”
This story can’t end well, and of course it does not. The dance club closes; Leela vanishes into prostitution while the author searches for her. Ultimately Leela loses a tooth in a beating, and she and a friend leave to work in Dubai at the urging of a gangster. You hate to think where she is at this moment.
This book, by its end, seems to have taken something out of Ms. Faleiro. You get the sense she’d like to close with even a hint of optimism, but that’s hard to muster. Instead she quotes the gangster, Sharma, who explains that Leela will probably someday preside over a small brothel herself.
Sharma issues a line that will ring in your ears. “She will sell her daughter, even if she is her only child, her only family, because her mother sold her, and who is her daughter to deserve better?”
Leela, were she to read “Beautiful Thing,” would probably spark up a cigarette and tell us where to stuff our horror and pity. She’d agree with the dancers who declared, within the author’s earshot, “Tears are the indulgences of those who haven’t suffered enough.”
By Sonia Faleiro
225 pages. Black Cat. $15.
- Books of The Times: ‘Beautiful Thing,’ by Sonia Faleiro (nytimes.com)
- For Some Women, the Misery of Mumbai’s Dance Bars Looks Like a Big Step Up (india.blogs.nytimes.com)
- Who Dances for Whom? (laf.ee)
TIMES OF INDIA
NEW DELHI: At a time when several people are being arrested in the AIIMS baby case, police have stumbled upon another gang of traffickers who used to abduct women from various parts of the capital and get them married off in other states for money. Two persons have been arrested from Hardwar and identified as Meena (45) and Vijay Rai (38).
The Outer Delhi police were carrying out raids to trace a 16-year-old girl, who had been kidnapped from the Shahbad Dairy area. After the police rescued the girl from Ghaziabad, it emerged that she was kidnapped by a ‘couple’ and taken to Hardwar where she was forced to marry a man. On her instance, the cops raided a hideout in Hardwar and rescued another woman, who was kidnapped from Old Delhi railway station by the same ‘couple’ after they befriended her while she was waiting for her train to Bihar to her husband on January 17. The duo had abducted the 20-year-old woman, from Ludhiana in Punjab, after sedating her at platform number 1 and took her to Hardwar where they were trying to marry her off.
The cops said the 16-year-old girl was kidnapped on December 18 from the Shahbad Dairy area by Vijay and Meena. The duo allegedly struck a deal with a man identified as Lokendra in Rs 80,000 and got them married. He began to live in Ghaziabad with the girl until the police traced her using electronic surveillance, cops said.
Initially, the girl did not reveal the real story and told cops that she had willingly married him but when she was sent for counselling to an NGO in Delhi, the girl spilled the beans. She gave them the address of the duo in Hardwar where she had been kept initially.
“We formed a police team that was sent to Hardwar to carry out further investigations and arrest the people involved in the racket. The team managed to arrest Meena and Vijay and brought them to Delhi,” said a senior police officer from Outer district.
According to the 20-year-old woman, while she was sitting alone at the platform, “a man wearing an army uniform sat beside me and began to chat. He was joined by another woman. Both became my friends as they said they had to go to Araria as well. They offered me tea and after drinking it, I lost consciousness. The duo then took me with them to Hardwar and kept me at their house.” The accused were about to get her married to a man but came in cops’ net before that.
The victim was brought to Delhi, counselled and sent to a short-stay home for women in distress in Hari Nagar as she did not have a local guardian or a house in Delhi. Later, the cops traced her parents. They came to Delhi and took her back home.
Vijay and Meena are being questioned by the cops. The police suspect that these two arrests may be the tip of the iceberg and, hence, the case has been handed over to the crime branch of Delhi Police.
- Karnataka – Delhi Inter State Police Collaboration rescues 4 Minor Girls (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Two arrested for trafficking, four minors rescued (shaktivahini.wordpress.com)
- Two arrested for trafficking, four minors rescued (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Main suspect in battered baby case arrested (thehindu.com)
- NGO’s role in human trafficking being probed (shaktivahini.wordpress.com)
- NGO’s role in human trafficking being probed (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- High profile call girl racket run by Sonu Bangalan busted. (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)
- Delhi Police arrest man who abandoned Falak (ibnlive.in.com)
- Prostitution ring busted, 6 arrested in east Delhi (traffickingnews.wordpress.com)