Human trafficking worry for Sundargarh

Published in The Telegraph

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Rourkela : The return of two married women, aged 24 and 36, from Saudi Arabia has brought women’s trafficking in the district to the fore again.

“Our study suggests that the situation is not encouraging,” said Rajendra Behera, chief co-ordinator of Pragati, which works for the rescue of trafficked women.

“We did an exhaustive study in 11 blocks out of 17 in the district and concluded that more than 13,000 women from different age groups are missing,” he said. Between 43,000 and 44,000 women across age groups have been trafficked between 2002-14 from the district, the study showed.

The women returned home on Sunday and narrated their ordeal. The Tarkera residents claimed that a neighbour and his family members had sold them off in Saudi Arabia for a hefty sum. Their employers kept them in confinement and physically and mentally abused them, the duo alleged.

Abul Kalam Azad of Childline at Bisra had rescued a 14-year-old Bangladeshi girl two years ago and returned her to her parents. He said: “These women are sexually abused both by the middleman and the employer.”

He said there was also an increase in the number of unwed mothers. Citing statistics, he said: “In the past six months, I have received 63 unwanted children either at my doorstep or from different places.” Most of them were found in remote jungle or far-off areas, said Azad. He found that most of these children belonged to those women who had been trafficked.

“The maximum trafficking takes place between the 14-18 and 19-25 age groups at 41 and 38 per cent respectively,” said Behera. His study also revealed that apart from poverty and the search for greener pastures, the glamour of bigger cities also lured many women into the traffickers’ traps.

Sundargarh district superintendent of police Pinaki Mishra agreed with Behera.

Most of the traffickers are also known to the women. They are either relatives or neighbours. “And when the girl does not return for a long time, the relative goes missing,” said Behera.

Mishra admitted that despite human trafficking being a major problem in the district, inadequate manpower forced police actions to go for preventive drive than going on the offensive. “We have written to the government for help with more manpower,” he said.

He also plans awareness drives, and creating a data bank of the blocks affected

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Young woman and toddler daughter sold for Rs 2 lakh, two people arrested

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A 28-year-old woman and her three-year-old daughter were allegedly sold in a human trafficking racket which originated from a flower shop near a Bhopal temple, discovered the police.

While the woman was sold for Rs 1.5 lakh to a 55-year-old widower farmer Sumer Gurjar in the dense forests of Malawar, her daughter was sold for Rs 50,000 to a beggar Gangaram (35) in the neighbouring Vidisha district, said the police.

The flower seller was allegedly paid an advance of Rs 10,000 by Gurjar and the remaining Rs 40,000 was to be paid in ten monthly instalments of Rs 4,000 each, claimed the police.

After being trafficked, the woman was imprisoned by Gurjar in a room, where he allegedly routinely raped her and forced her to work as labourer in agricultural fields under watchful eyes of armed guards.

The woman is a native of Khandwa district (280 km from Bhopal) and had been living with her daughter and maternal aunt in the Mother India Colony since being divorced by her husband four years ago. She used to earn a living working as daily wage labourer and also used to beg at railway stations, places of worship and traffic signals.

The incident came to light when the woman’s sister recently reported to Shahjahanabad police that her sister and toddler niece had been missing since August 2017. The subsequent probe led the police to flower seller Ranjit, who upon thorough interrogation allegedly confessed knowing the woman through a friend.

Additional SP (ASP-Bhopal Zone) Rajesh Bhadouria told the New Indian Express, “Two of the five accused include Ranjit, who runs a flower shop near the Kali Temple in Bhopal’s Talaiya area and the beggar Gangaram to whom the toddler girl was sold. It’s also suspected that Gangaram’s live-in partner in Vidisha district could have been trafficked from Rajasthan.

“Entire operation by six teams of city police which included female cops started on Thursday and spanned over 72 hours. Three remaining accused, including rich farmer Sumer Gurjar and his father and the middleman in Bhopal identified as Shanu are yet to be arrested,” he added.

The accused, including the arrested duo, have been booked under IPC Sections 363A (kidnapping or maiming a minor for begging), 366 (kidnapping or inducing a woman to compel marriage, etc), 376 (rape) and 370 (human trafficking).

According to the Crime in India 2016, a report released by the National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB), a total of 51 cases of human trafficking were reported in MP during 2016. A total 120 persons (66 males and 54 females) were trafficked, out of which 97 were aged below 18 years (62 males and 32 females) and 23 aged above 18 years (4 males and 19 females). Also, total 4817 victims (1595 males and 3222 females) were rescued from traffickers.

New born sold for Rs. 50000, human traffickers are active in the second capital of Maharashtra

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The incident goes like this, accused approached one Mona Barsagade, 26, a resident of Wadi area through a lady mediator Bharati
new born sold for rs 50000 human traffickers are active in the second capital of maharashtra

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Dhantoli police had apprended a couple named Manish Mundada,36 and his wife Harsha Mundada,32 for allegedly buying out a 12 day old girl child from her poor mother on assurance of paying her Rs. 50000. After registering the complaint in appropriate sections, the police had arrested the couple and produced them in the court. The court had sanctioned 2 days remand for their custodial interrogation to the police. The arrest had raised qualm, that some human trafficking gang is active in the city. A senior police official revealed that we are investigating the matter from all possible angles.

The incident goes like this, accused approached one Mona Barsagade, 26, a resident of Wadi area through a lady mediator Bharati. Mona was blessed with one son, her husband is doing some business. During her second pregnancy, she had gone to a private hospital near law college square for treatment. The couple lured her to give her child to them and offered her to pay an amount of Rs. 50000. After the couple persuaded him, Mona agreed to it. On November 22, she delivered a girl child and handed over the child to the couple, against a payment of Rs.50000. After some time she started realising her mistake. She approached the couple for getting her daughter back.

When the couple refused, she lodged a complaint with the police. Acting on the complaint the cops arrested the couple from their residence at Senapati Nagar, Dighori. The couple claimed that this is a case of surrogacy and that they are running a surrogacy centre. However they could not produce relevant documents to justify their claim. Police also suspect for the involvement of the couple in an inter state human trafficking racket.

 

Calls to crackdown on people paying from just $1.50 for child sex in India

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By Roli Srivastava

MUMBAI, India, Dec 8 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Indian authorities are facing mounting pressure to crackdown on people paying to have sex with children with a politician from India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) rallying for public support to call for tougher action.

Fashion designer and spokeswoman of the Mumbai unit of BJP, Shaina Nana Chudasama, better known as Shaina N.C., has set up a change.org petition which already has nearly 100,000 signatures to raise concerns that hardly any child sex buyers are punished.

Child sex offenders in India can get up to life imprisonment under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, but the law is rarely applied in cases of children forced into commercial sex, campaigners say.

“The exploitation of children is so alarming. A person needs to spend all of 100 rupees ($1.50) to exploit children,” Shaina N.C. told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

She cited the case of a 14-year-old who was pumped with hormone injections to make her look older, was forced into having sex with multiple men, and later arrested along with brothel managers. The customers were let off after a warning.

She is demanding the chief minister of the western Maharashtra state, Devendra Fadnavis, mandate the police to arrest buyers of child sex.

PROTECT CHILDREN

“I am hoping the government will support the petition. We need to protect our children from across all sections of the society,” she said.

Campaigners on Thursday unveiled early findings of a study on child sexual exploitation that showed people paying for child sex are never arrested or prosecuted.

“In a regular child sexual abuse case, the child’s parents file a case against a known offender, which makes investigation easier,” said Roop Sen, researcher with Change Makers that carried out the study with Mumbai-based Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS).

“But for children in commercial sex, the offenders are many and unknown to the child.”

Data released by the Indian government shows reports of human trafficking rose by almost 20 percent in 2016 against the previous year to more than 8,000. More than 60 percent of nearly 24,000 victims rescued were children.

South Asia, with India at its centre, is seen as one of the fastest-growing regions for human trafficking globally with an estimated 40 million people living as modern slaves last year.

Campaigners say thousands of children largely from poor rural families are lured or abducted by traffickers every year in India, and sold onto pimps and brothels who force them into sexual slavery.

The demand to focus on the men who buy sex is one of a series of measures in the report by the National Coalition to Protect Our Children (NCPOC), an initiative started by Indian parliamentarian Rajeev Chandrasekhar.

“The customer is the main person who creates and perpetuates demand. Sex trafficking will not stop until customers are treated as criminals,” said P.M. Nair, chair professor and research coordinator on human trafficking at TISS.

Reporting by Roli Srivastava @Rolionaroll; Editing by Belinda Goldsmith; Please credit Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women´s rights, trafficking, property rights, climate change and resilience. Visit news.trust.org

Uttarakhand High Court Directs Government To Abolish Begging

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Published in The New Indian Express

NAINITAL The Uttarakhand High Court today directed the state government to abolish begging and legislate laws to fight the evil and also human trafficking.

A division bench of justices Rajiv Sharma and Alok Singh asked the state government to conduct DNA test of children accompanying beggars to confirm whether they are their legitimate children or stolen by them and forced into begging.

It also asked the state government to frame laws against human trafficking modelling them upon those laid down by the UNO.

Setting aside the order of a lower court in a human trafficking case in which the offender had been acquitted, the bench convicted him and issued directions to the state government to curb the evil at the grass-roots level and address the issue of human trafficking in general.

The central and local agencies should follow a procedure for proper verification, counter verification identity of children, coming to India from neighbouring Nepal, the division bench said.

The police was asked to invoke provisions of the Money Laundering Act, 2008 and attach the properties of those involved in human trafficking. It also said that legal aid should be provided to the victims of human trafficking.

The central agencies were directed to increase patrolling on the international borders to check the problem, it said.

The state should take preventive measures to check the trafficking of children from Uttarakhand by improving the socio-economic conditions of the areas which are more vulnerable to it.

An SIT should be constituted within four weeks, headed by the SSP to investigate the issue of ‘rampant child trafficking’, the bench said.

Police was also directed to maintain a photo bank data to trace the missing children.

FIRs in the cases of missing children should be registered promptly and investigated in a time-bound manner, the court said.

Two Bangladeshis arrested near Mumbai for sex trafficking of a minor

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The girl was allegedly in a relationship with one of the accused and was brought to India on the promise of marriage
She was forced into prostitution and raped repeatedly.

She was forced into prostitution and raped repeatedly.(File pic for representation)

Two Bangladeshi men were arrested by the Thane antihuman trafficking cell on Wednesday for allegedly kidnapping a 16-year-old girl from the neighbouring country and raping her over a month. The accused — Liyan alias Saurabh Noor Islam Mulla, 20, and his uncle, Shohag Mohammed Shabib Islam, 25 — were remanded in police custody till December 12.

According to the police, the girl was kept in a rented house in Bangalore and was brought to Thane on the pretext that she was being sent back to Bangladesh.

The girl was allegedly in a relationship with Mulla for a year and was brought to India last month on the promise of marriage. A police officer from the Thane station, said “Mulla lured the girl with the promise of marriage. He told her that they would visit Bangalore for a month before getting married. However, after coming to India, she was forced into prostitution and raped repeatedly.”

On a tip-off, the Thane police sent a decoy officer to Mulla who agreed to sell the girl for Rs75,000. Mulla was arrested from Shivaji hospital, Kalwa.

The two have been charged under relevant sections of the POCSO and IPC.

Children raped, burnt into submission in Indian brothels – report

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"Fifty-five percent of the survivors were beaten with objects and some were forced to witness murder of other minors. These are extremely violent and cruel methods."
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The brutal “breaking in” of trafficked girls in Indian brothels, from rape to beatings to starvation, leaves girls unable to say “no to anyone” or escape, a new study has found.

The testimonies of child sex trafficking survivors in the eastern Indian city of Kolkata offer a glimpse into the violence young girls endure before they are pushed into the sex trade.

“Traffickers are using the tactic of a ‘conditioning period’ to break the resilience of children,” said Saji Philip of the charity International Justice Mission, which co-authored the study with the government of West Bengal state.

“Fifty-five percent of the survivors were beaten with objects and some were forced to witness murder of other minors. These are extremely violent and cruel methods.”

The report into the prevalence of commercial sexual exploitation of children in Kolkata found more than half of the survivors had undergone a breaking in period involving being raped by the first customer, threats and physical violence.

West Bengal, with Kolkata as its capital, accounted for 44 percent of human trafficking cases reported in 2016 and also had the most missing children reports, according to government data.

Based on interviews with survivors, researchers said some had been beaten over a period of two weeks and burned with cigarettes, some were kept in isolation, while one was locked in a room without food for 12 days.

In addition to conditioning periods, managers used debt bondage to force survivors to enter the sex trade, said the report, published last week.

Managers told about half of the survivors that they had been sold and could not leave until they had repaid the money.

Others were told they owed the hosts who fed, clothed and housed them during sometimes months-long periods before they were forced into the sex trade, having been lured on the promise that they would be placed in well-paid jobs.

Once they had been “broken in”, survivors reported providing services to seven to 18 clients a day.

“They (managers) said not to go against the customer’s word – to let them have pleasure and not to express our pain,” said one teenager from West Bengal interviewed for the report.

“If they’re pleased, they would pay more.”