Man, wife arrested for trying to sell 16-year-old at GB Road

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PUBLISHED IN INDIAN EXPRESS

Mohammad Kalam (25), a resident of Lucknow, would randomly dial phone numbers — and usually find elderly men or children on the receiving side. In October, he dialed a number and a young girl in Kanpur picked up. Over the next two months, Kalam befriended the 16-year-old. They would make video calls and even though Kalam was married, he managed to lure the girl to Lucknow on the pretext of marriage. When she came to meet him, he and his wife allegedly confined her to a room.

Kalam, an alleged sex trafficker, first tried to ‘sell’ the girl in Lucknow and Mumbai. He then came to Delhi to ‘sell’ her at GB Road. On Thursday, police arrested Kalam while he was walking around the area, allegedly looking for a customer.

“A policeman in plainclothes found that he was trying to ‘sell’ a minor. He bargained with the accused before ‘settling’ at Rs 2,20,000 as the final price. He also managed to identify the minor through a photograph. He then asked Kalam to meet him at a decided location, from where he was arrested by a police team,” an officer said.

His wife, Shaheen alias Muskaan, was arrested from a rented house near Jama Masjid. Police also rescued the girl from the house. During questioning, Kalam said he told the girl he would marry her, and asked her to meet him. When she found that he was already married, he told her he would marry her as well and keep her happy. “She stayed with the couple for a month in a room in Lucknow,” a police officer said.

Police said the accused tried to employ her as a prostitute at a highway in Uttar Pradesh and at a dance bar in Lucknow. The girl refused, following which he decided to sell her at GB Road, police said .

On contacting her family, police found that her relatives had registered a missing person complaint at the local police station, which was later converted into a kidnapping case. “The girl will be produced before the Child Welfare Commission, where her statement will be recorded. Her parents are on their way to meet her,” the officer said.

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Foreigners arrested for sex racket in Gurugram

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Gurugram, Dec 10 – Haryana Police on Sunday said they have arrested six women, including two foreigners, and a man for operating a sex racket from a spa here.

After a tip, the police on Saturday night raided the Auwa Thai spa centre in the Central Plaza Mall on Golf Course Road in Sector 53. The accused, including a woman from Thailand and another from Kenya, were booked under the Immoral Traffic Prevention Act and sent to judicial custody for 14 days, police officer Ravinder Kumar told IANS.

Similar rackets have been busted in Gurugram earlier. On June 29, the police busted sex rackets operated in shopping malls and arrested 10 women aged between 20 and 25 and a man.

In January, 14 women and four men were arrested on similar charges from DLF 2 area and another shopping mall.

Untraceable sex racket: 99% illegal flesh trade go unreported

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PUBLISHED IN THE AFTERNOON VOICE

Almost every one of us receiving SMS texts, email, and sometimes even on WhatsApp messengers about the online sex advertisement with lucrative offers and girls picture. Most of us ignore or delete these messages though the message carrying every required detail of the senders without making any initiative for police complaint.

Prashant Ghatge from Dombivli, a latest victim of the racket explained how he was trapped in this web. Ghatge, a divorcee, whose marriage was not last for six months, said “Online prostitution racket is a flourishing business, and dating sites are another curse over it. These websites display obscene pictures with information for female escorts. Mobile numbers and email addresses were also displayed on the site for striking a deal with customers, and that too attract me also.”

Loneliness was haunting him and he went in depression, those days he approached a dating site with an intention to have likeminded friend or partner. “I registered myself for premium membership but later on I realized that I was dragged into sex racket. Whoever friend (the girl) who approached me ask for one night stand on the first dating only, along with shopping, gifts and perks. This becomes almost an addiction. One after another girl comes in your way and you get emptied at the end,” he said.

Ghatge further explained that, here everything is happening with a high confidentiality. “Going with a girl for fun is social stigma even today in our society, and no girl or boy approach police after the worst experiences also.”

Prashant further stated that, even girls at times go through worst, because they fail to recognise the one whom she is dating is first or second time. Many girls get addicted to these gifts and perks they receive and become soft target of such sites. Especially in metro cities, girls stay alone and they are bachelors for late 20s or early 30s because of jobs compulsion and they becomes vulnerable target for such things.

Recently Cyber Crime Cell of Mumbai Police has arrested five persons for duping over 2,000 people to the tune of lakhs of rupees through an online sex platform. The accused used to operate a call centre from Masjid Bunder in South Mumbai. Explaining the modus operandi of the accused, police said the customers had the facility to log in on three different websites.

“After registering on one of these websites and paying Rs. 999, one could connect with a person of the opposite sex, like a friendship club. The payments were being made through PayTm in the account number mentioned on the website, the registration fees paid by the customer used to get transferred into the bank account of a jeweller from the same area. The customers later used to realise that they have been duped,” police said.

Hacker and cyber security person Rakesh Sharma said, “Online dating clubs can be an excellent way to unite singles in a purposeful environment. The predominant advantage of many dating clubs is the ability to meet a wide pool of singles in an immediate face-to-face setting, though some clubs employ online measures as well”.

“Though, every site or club is not thug or involve in prostitution rackets. Nowadays, people are educated and ambitious, due to their career needs and they prefer to be singles and they find like-minded people on these sites. Rest is individual’s choice as they are adults to go with them or not,” added Sharma.

However, after the registration, the customer used to contact a specific number, displayed on the website, but could not get response despite repeated calls. The police had recently received complaints from men who had paid to become members of the online friendship clubs, but were not introduced to any women.

“Mobile phone frauds have become a common occurrence, but of late, another serious offence related to misuse of mobile phone numbers is being reported. Mobile phone recharge shops have been reportedly taking advantage of innocent girls who approach them for recharge coupons and give their numbers. The employees/owners of the shop or their friends call the girls on their numbers, develop friendships and later misuse them. In many cases, girls fall prey to the mischief mongers, and it has been reported that boys take maximum advantage of this, ending up ruining the girls’ lives. One of such incidence recently reported in Kundapur, but I am sure this might be happening everywhere,” said Mahesh Palande, a social worker.

Police Raid Brothel, Find Man’s Skeleton Dumped By Racket Queen 13 Years Ago

The police arrested the woman, Sarita Bharti, 37, under the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act for running a prostitution racket, and rescued four women on December 4 from her house in Dandipada in Boisar

The police in Maharashtra’s Boisar have recovered the skeleton of a man from a water closet (WC) inside a brothel owned by a woman.

Deputy superintendent of police Fatesingh Patil said the police arrested the woman, Sarita Bharti, 37, under the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act for running a prostitution racket, and rescued four women on December 4 from her house in Dandipada in Boisar.

During the probe, the police learnt that she had killed her husband Sahdeo Bharti 13 years ago, and buried the body in the same house.

“On Tuesday night, we have received information that Sarita is not only involved in the sex racket, but she had also killed several people, including her husband,” said senior inspector Kiran Kabadi from Boisar police station told Mid-Day.

When a police team dug up the floor of the house, they found a skeleton inside a pit, reported PTI. It was sent to forensic laboratory for examination.

Sarita further revealed that she killed her husband by hitting him on the head while he was asleep. The reason behind the murder is not clear yet. Our investigations are on,” Kabadi added.

 

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.

Rise in number of rescues, arrests as well: Almost half of India’s trafficking victims from West Bengal, reveals NCRB data

A total of 8,132 cases of human trafficking were reported in the country in 2016, of which Bengal recorded the highest, 3,597 cases, followed by Rajasthan with 1,422 cases

Published in The Indian Express

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Forty-four percent of the nation’s trafficking victims are from West Bengal, according to fresh data released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB). Though the data also showed a rise in the number of rescues and arrests in such cases, experts called for more grassroots intervention by the state government and NGOs.

After West Bengal, Rajasthan is a distant second at 17.49 per cent. A total of 8,132 cases of human trafficking were reported in the country in 2016, of which Bengal recorded the highest, 3,597 cases, followed by Rajasthan with 1,422 cases.

After Rajasthan (5767) and Madhya Pradesh (4817), Bengal recorded the third highest number of victims rescued by police, at 2,793 (77 per cent). Of those rescued, 2,323 are females whereas 470 are males. The numbers of persons arrested in West Bengal in connection with sex trafficking (1,847) is also the highest in the country. The police were also able to charge a large number of those arrested (1,795). However, in 2016, only 11 were convicted, while 224 were acquitted or discharged by court.

“Somewhere, government and NGOs are failing to identify the vulnerability in villages. We are all to blame for this. (That) West Bengal contributes 44% of the nation’s trafficking victims is alarming. Also is the fact that these are registered cases and just the tip of the iceberg,” said Rishi Kant of Shakti Bahini, an NGO that works towards rescue and rehabilitation across the country, while speaking to The Indian Express from New Delhi.

“Police seem to be playing a proactive role with a large number of arrests and rescues in 2016. But the district administration and NGOs, which are supposed to reach out to vulnerable families, are not doing their job to a satisfactory level. Bengal remains the hotbed for trafficking,” added Kant.

Experts said poorer sections of society in villages are most vulnerable to trafficking. Traffickers have a good network in villages through touts and utilise poverty and lack of jobs as bait to lure victims. According to the NCRB report, sexual exploitation, prostitution and forced marriage remain the main purposes of trafficking.

“It is mainly through marriages and lure of jobs that girls are trafficked out of Bengal. There is a need of a placement agency Act in the state. The Act will enable proper tracking of agencies (many of which operate from outside Bengal) and whoever they have placed for jobs (possible victims). Secondly, more awareness is necessary to prevent child marriages. Early marriages are still a menace in Bengal. A number of initiatives have been taken like Kanyashree in Bengal, which has been beneficial,” said Chittapriyo Sadhu, general manager, state programme (West Bengal and Assam).

“The modus operandi of traffickers has also changed as compared to five years ago. Also is the fact that more cases are reported now by parents of victims,” added Sadhu. “We are trying our best to rescue girls when a case is reported. In many cases, family members do not report it, mostly when victims are lured for jobs. There is a need for NGOs, civil society, panchayats, police and government to come together for prevention of the menace,” said a senior police officer.

Sold, Tortured and Repeatedly Raped, Now Jaya Is a Guardian Angel for Sex Workers

The Better India

An incredible initiative to rehabilitate sex workers and their children.

“Those who have suffered understand suffering and therefore extend their hand.”
—Patti Smith

Prostitution in India is unregulated. And in many scenarios considered illegal. Which is why sex workers do not have an audience for their woes. Regarded as “immoral” by a society with a skewed moral compass, they are most often denied basic human decency.

Trafficking is one of prostitution’s primary sources for new sex workers. Lured by the offer of a job, or even kidnapped, trafficked women have no idea what is in store for them till they find themselves locked up alone with a drunk, lustful “client”.

Jayamma grew up an orphan. After a tough adolescence and teenage, she finally met a man she loved and married. This man, over the course of time, started succumbing to alcoholism and forcibly sold Jayamma to a broker for sex work.

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 finalist, Jayamma quit sexwork to set up an NGO for edu, skills and protection of children of sexworkers

Kidnapped, repeatedly raped, beaten, sold, bought, wrongfully confined and harassed both mentally and physically, Jayamma decided to take up the cause of women in the same situation she was in.

This was difficult, as these women were not willing to be identified or helped, scared of the network of undesirable elements.

With the help of Mr Jaya Singh Thomas, an NGO executive from the “IRDS” in Hyderabad, Jayamma began to slowly go about meeting these women, speaking to them and collecting their stories. Many were sold by their own husbands or forced into prostitution by unscrupulous pimps. Many had been promised a job in the city but abducted soon after.

There was an urgent need to do something for these women.

Jaya and Jayamma realised that everything cannot be done at a stretch. There needs to be a legal identity of the support system. From the period 1998-2001, Jayamma visited rural self-help groups.

Discussing the impact of domestic violence, she was still hesitant to reveal her identity. However, on 1st December 2001 (World Aids Day), Jayamma and around 300 women took out a rally, with a banner that ready. “Chaithanya Mahila Mandali”, an initiative for the betterment of the life of sex workers and their children in Hyderabad.

When the initiative began, the ill-treatment sex workers receive on a regular basis became apparent. Police harassment, negative media portrayal and outright refusal by landlords when looking for a place to live, are some of the issues sex workers in India have to deal with.

Sex Worker in India. Picture for representative purposes only. Picture Courtesy: Flickr.

Sex Worker. Picture for representative purposes only. Picture Courtesy: Flickr.

The Chaithanya Mandali went from station to station and assured the sex workers that they are looking to uplift them, and are non-judgemental, willing to help any woman who wishes to opt out of the system.

The children of sex workers who Jayamma had met in 1998 had turned to or were forcibly entered into full-blown prostitution by 2004 or 2005.

Hyderabad has no red light area. The sex workers go out and solicit clients. They also take their children with them. They do this because the children have nowhere to go, and the police will not harass them if they are seen with a child. Once they solicit a client, the child often accompanies his mother and the client, as they go about their business.

Sometimes, small children get abused in front of their mothers. These people were not in a position to come to the police station. There have been many such unfortunate and unreported incidents involving sex workers and their children.

The Chaithanya Mahila Mandali initiated a system by which the children of sex workers would be protected. Through their programmes, they have achieved success. The children are growing up well, many of them work in MNC’s and are settled abroad.

The initiative that started in Hyderabad in 2010 with ten children, today has 56 children living with their mothers. Thanks to the Chaithanya Mahila Mandali, these sex-workers can now try for other jobs. The mandal not only rehabilitates the sex worker and her child, but also carries out follow-ups to check whether the child is safe.

The Chaithanya Mahila Mandali today boasts of a variety of programs, working in urban slums and rural areas, and holding crucial workshops highlighting the evils of trafficking. Through this initiative, more than 5000 women and children are being supported. Jaya maintains that it all boils down to the next generation, the children, who have to be protected from pimps.

The Chaithanya Mahila Mandali also works closely with, the government schools and authorities, to keep an eye on human trafficking.

If the children are sensitized towards the evils of trafficking, the future generations might shun the terrible practice altogether, wasting no time in bringing the perpetrators of the same to justice.

 A Session in Progress Picture Courtesy: Facebook.

A Session in Progress Picture Courtesy: Facebook.

The Chaitanya Mahila Mandali has been very successful in helping sex workers become re-enter mainstream society. The initiative takes care of the parentless and children of women forced into sex.

Jayamma, being in unfortunate circumstances herself, is able to empathise with these women who seemingly have no future. Even though she has won multiple awards, she remains focused on her ultimate goal—to successfully rehabilitate sex workers and their children.

Prostitution in India may not see legalisation or regulation anytime soon. If that does happen, then the industry will come out of the grip of the mafia that controls it. But till then, sex workers and their children will always face adversity. Right from the trafficker who kidnaps them, to the pimp who brokers them, to the client who abuses them, physically and mentally, to the society that casts them out, after fulfilling its lust.

It is time that we humanise and sensitise ourselves, and make a conscious effort to rehabilitate and help sex workers and their children.