07th May, New Delhi: As per government data, almost 20,000 women and children were victims of human trafficking in India in 2016, a rise of nearly 25 per cent compared to 2015.
Trafficking of Child and women is a serious concern prevalent in India. According to a report published by the US Department of State, India is the source, destination and transit country for human trafficking who then get involved in forced labor and sex trafficking. The statistics of the Ministry of Women and Child Development states that 19,223 women and children were trafficked in 2016 against 15,448 in 2015, with the highest number of victims being recorded in the eastern state of West Bengal. People from the lower cast or the tribal communities and the women and children from the excluded groups of the society are generally lured of a better lifestyle and employment opportunity and sold by the agents.
Human trafficking is considered the third largest organized crime, globally and the number is increasing every year. Poverty, uneven employment, gender discrimination, harmful traditional and cultural practices and lack of proper policy implementation to end this grave condition are some of the causes of human trafficking in India.
Almost 80% of all worldwide trafficking is for sexual exploitation, with an estimated 1.2 million children being bought and sold into sexual slavery every year. India as a nation is still being used by the traffickers as receiving, sending and transit country. Women and girls are the main victims of human trafficking in India. They are then forced into prostitution, forced marriage, and domestic work. Based a report published by the Govt of India, there are approximately 10 million sex workers in India out of which 1,00,000 belong to Mumbai alone which is Asia’s largest sex industry center. 300,000 to 500,00 under 18 years of age children are involved in the sex trade. Such is the extent of trafficking within the boundaries of the country, forget about the trafficking rate abroad.
In addition to trafficking for prostitution, girls and women are also bought and sold into forced marriages in women deficit areas due to female infanticide. The forced children are subjected to physical and sexual abuse and treated as slaves. In many cases, trafficked children and women are at risk of all manner of ills, from unwanted pregnancy, HIV/Aids, cervical cancer, severe physical injury, violence, drug abuse and more, not to mention the emotional trauma and long-run psychological impact.
The human trafficking phenomenon is all-pervading and is considered as a complex problem in any society. States no matter however powerful or weak or partially address the issues by using the legal and administrative mechanism. Many social activists and NGOs along with Governmental implementation are actively participating in numerous activities especially in educating and training people at the community level and protecting the vulnerable class of the society. The Indian Government that also must act and implement a plethora of regulations outlawing trafficking and associated criminality in the country. There needs to have an urgent and essential measure to reduce the epidemic of trafficking in India.
Source: Times of India