Slaves to the grind

1
314

Most of the girls slept together but some were routinely segregated and raped repeatedly over days. This, of course, does not find any mention in the police report.

In Rajeshwari’s case, she was given an “all-clear” certificate by the Namakkal sub-judicial magistrate, stating that she does not owe any money to the owner of Gems Agro, Junaid Ahmed. The factory was raided after her escape and since then it has been closed down.

The International Labour Organisation estimates that human trafficking in India could be anywhere between 2.5 million to 90 million. Several credible international news reports and NGOs have estimated that almost 20,000 tribals vanish into homes and brothels every year.

The matter had been raised in the Chhattisgarh Assembly several times but the state government has not taken any concrete action except forming an Anti-Human Trafficking Committee. Former home minister Nankiram Kanwar admitted in the Assembly last year that, on an average, five girls go missing from the state every day.

Statistics from the past five years reveal that 9,000 complaints of missing girls have been registered with the police, of which most cases were reported from Raipur. The government claims that the police have traced the whereabouts of 8,000 girls. However, almost 1,000 girls from Bastar and adjoining districts are still missing.

[box]

‘Somebody had offered Rs 7 lakh to buy me’

Phutun Alias Phoolwant | 13  |  Jamaniyapath, Jashpur District
Phutun alias Phoolwant | 13 | Jamaniyapath, Jashpur District

Phutun fell victim to a trafficking gang masquerading as a placement agency, which brought her to Delhi in 2005. She was held captive in a room with 21 girls. They were not allowed to go out. Phutun somehow managed to escape and reached home.

She reveals that three girls were sold when she was there. “Somebody had offered Rs 7 lakh for me but the traffickers were demanding Rs 10 lakh,” she reveals. Had the deal been struck, she could have never escaped. But as fate would have it, some neighbours alerted the police, who rescued her last November.

Her family had feared the worst and was happy to see her safe and sound. Now, Phutun has appealed to the police to save the other girls too.

[/box]

The matter had been raised in the Chhattisgarh Assembly several times but the state government has not taken any concrete action except forming an Anti-Human Trafficking Committee. Former home minister Nankiram Kanwar admitted in the Assembly last year that, on an average, five girls go missing from the state every day.

Statistics from the past five years reveal that 9,000 complaints of missing girls have been registered with the police, of which most cases were reported from Raipur. The government claims that the police have traced the whereabouts of 8,000 girls. However, almost 1,000 girls from Bastar and adjoining districts are still missing.

1 COMMENT

  1. I am from TN and I thought TN has no slaves. But this is really shocking and i wonder why this news has not come out in any media in TN. Is no one bothered about it?

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Comment moderation is enabled. Your comment may take some time to appear.