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Country_Report_India

Country_Report_India

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HUMAN TRAFFICKING – INDIA IN FOCUS

INTRODUCTION India is a source, destination, and transit country for men, women, and children trafficked for the purposes of forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation. Internal forced labor may constitute India's largest trafficking problem; men, women, and children in debt bondage are forced to work in industries such as brick kilns, rice mills, agriculture, and embroidery factories. According to a report of the National Commission for Women, (NCW) at least half of the 612 districts in the country are affected by trafficking of women and children for commercial sexual exploitation. The NCW report says that in 378 districts, there are 1,794 identified places of origin from where females are trafficked and 1,016 areas where commercial sexual activities take place. The states in southern and eastern India are the most vulnerable as far as trafficking is concerned. Tamil Nadu with approximately 93.3% of its districts are affected, is leading the tally of the states affected by human trafficking followed by Orissa with 86.7% and Bihar 86.5%. Also 2.4% of the total female population in age group of 15-35 years in the country are affected by commercial sexual exploitation and over 22% women are trafficked and forced into flesh trade by family members. In eastern India, the situation is worse in areas which are underdeveloped. Pangsa and Dimapur in Nagaland and more in Manipur are the major transit and demand centers. Women and children from Assam and Bangladesh are trafficked to more and from there, they are moved out to Myanmar and other countries in South East Asia through the Golden Triangle. Similarly, women and children from Assam (especially Jorhat), Nagaland (especially Mokokchung, Tuensang, Pangsa) and Bangladesh are trafficked through the Pangsa International Treat Tower and then moved to the Golden Triangle. Dimapur is a transit center for people trafficked from Assam, especially upper Assam, Lumding, Guwahati, etc. They are moved to More or the international border at Tuensang and from there to the Golden Triangle. There are also victims of labor trafficking among the thousands of Indians who migrate willingly every year to the Middle East, Europe, United Kingdom and United States for work as domestic servants and low-skilled laborers. In some cases, such workers are the victims of fraudulent recruitment practices committed in India that lead them directly into situations of forced labor, including debt bondage, restrictions on movement, unlawful withholding of passports, and physical or sexual abuse. / RESPONSES: GOVERNMENT The Constitution of India, the fundamental law of the land, forbids trafficking in persons. The commitment to address the problem of trafficking in human beings is also reflected in various laws/legislations and policy documents of the Government of India. The Indian Penal Code, 1860 contains more than 20 provisions that are relevant to trafficking and impose criminal penalties for offences like kidnapping, abduction, buying or selling a person for slavery/labour, buying or selling a minor for prostitution, importing/procuring a minor girl, rape, etc. The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956 (ITPA), initially enacted as the ‘Suppression of Immoral Traffic in Women and Girls Act, 1956, is the main legislative tool for preventing and combating trafficking in human beings in India. However, till date, its prime objective has been to inhibit/abolish traffic in women and girls for the purpose of prostitution as an organized means of living. The Act criminalizes the procurers, traffickers and profiteers of the trade but in no way does it define ‘trafficking’ per se in human beings. Hence there is a marked absence of any standard guideline for intervention or law enforcement in preventing trafficking from occurring. The Government is in the process of amending the ITPA, with a view to making the laws victim-friendly
POLICIES

The government undertook several measures to reduce demand for commercial sex acts during the reporting period. Beside these. PROTECTION: GOVERNMENT India's efforts to protect victims of trafficking varied from state to state. the central government approved a nationwide model that merges its national educational and poverty alleviation programs together to combat child labor. benefiting more than 1. at the same time. 2006. such as the arrests of 856 customers of prostitution in Andhra Pradesh. Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act.000 for 18 projects at 12 rehabilitation centers. Bihar. giving victims rescued from sexual exploitation $200 in temporary relief. Although states have made some improvements to their shelter care. Information Technology Act. 1956. and the Transplantation of Human Organs Act. 1994. Criminal Procedure Code. Child Marriage Restraint Act. In January 2009. but this has still not been ratified. the Goa Children’s Act. 1929. However. rehabilitation. Manipur. 1989. but the quality of care varies widely. The ministry approved funding for at least 53 state projects under this program. Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act. 2003.700 victims. the government supports over 200 shelters with an annual budget of more than $1 million to provide care for more than 13. Also there is a UN Convention against Transnational Organised Crime (the Palermo Protocol) that will. the ministry provided the states of Karnataka. India has not ratified the 2000 UN TIP Protocol. there are also certain other collateral laws having relevance to trafficking. Since August 2008. The Delhi government established a helpline staffed by NGOs in February 2009 to help rescue children found begging.000 women and girls rescued from a range of difficult circumstances. Government shelters for sex trafficking victims are found in all major cities. Maharashtra. victims in these facilities do not receive comprehensive protection services. give a comprehensive definition of trafficking. Protection efforts often suffered from a lack of sufficient financial and technical support from government sources. These are the Indian Evidence Act. 1973. and protection for victims of labor trafficking remained very weak. Under its Swadhar program. Maharashtra. PREVENTION: GOVERNMENT India continues to conduct information and education campaigns against trafficking in persons and child labor. Tamil Nadu began providing free legal aid and drug and alcohol addiction counseling services in state shelters to trafficking victims. Andhra Pradesh Devdasi (Prohibiting Dedication) Act. state authorities operated homes for minor victims of sex trafficking. rescue. 1872. In Maharashtra. Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act. which covers a broad range of activities of which anti-sex trafficking is one. 1986. and reintegration of sex trafficking victims. 1958. Many victims decline to testify against their . and Nagaland almost $243. In late 2008 the central government completed its 18-month long consultation process with the Ministry of Women and Child Development. Tamil Nadu. 2000. making punishment for traffickers more stringent and putting greater criminal culpability on them.and. when implemented. Ministry of Home Affairs. 1976. including sex trafficking. Young Persons (Harmful Publications) Act. Goa. West Bengal. The Ministry of Women and Child Development continues to give grants under its Ujjawala program for the prevention. and West Bengal. National Human Rights Commission and National Commission for Women have decided to work in unison and draw up an Integrated Plan of Action to Prevent and Combat Human Trafficking with Special Focus on Children and Women. and Andhra Pradesh. the other relevant Acts which address the issue of trafficking in India are the Karnataka Devdasi (Prohibition of Dedication) Act. Probation of Offenders Act. 1986. and the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Act. 1982. such as psychological assistance from trained counselors. Andhra Pradesh established a fund specifically for victim rehabilitation.

Despite ITPA being a social legislation. protection. CNI in January 2008 in Patna. the Church has been seriously engaged in the anti-trafficking crusade since many of its dioceses are in its sting. under Article 23. organizations and community based groups by integration of awareness on trafficking in the existing programmes. administration. the state labor ministry and police. State governments continued to demonstrate efforts to address forced child labor. Diocese of Patna. There are several steps prescribed in this legislation towards prevention of trafficking.traffickers due to fear of retribution by traffickers and India's sluggish and overburdened judicial system. with enhanced punishment for sexual exploitation of children. police. / RESPONSES: CHURCH Church of North India (CNI) has intervened in combating human trafficking in the eastern Himalayan area where the closure of tea gardens has made the children and women vulnerable to trafficking. Recently. rescue. its official social service agency. but failed to punish most traffickers. The central government has allocated $18 million to the Ministry of Home Affairs to create 297 antihuman trafficking units across the nation to train and sensitize law enforcement officials. the New Delhi government rescued over 100 children from forced labor situations. Caritas India has focused mainly on trafficking of women. The government does not actively encourage victims to participate in cases against their traffickers. However. NGOs and civil society to tackle this problem in the region. through. However. but made little progress in addressing bonded labor. The Constitution of India. Nagpur in May 2009. conducted raids on 120 establishments during a planned operation and rescued 208 children from forced or bonded labor situations. organized a Consultation on “Tackling newer emerging vulnerabilities leading to trafficking in children and women in Bihar”. Usually. Caritas India. A national level programme on the theme “Trafficking in Women: Role of the Church” was held at the CNI Center for Human Potential Development. rehabilitation and reintegration. the ITPA takes into consideration only trafficking for sexual exploitation. According to NGOs. no role has so far been envisaged for DWCD in monitoring the law enforcement process. state-level officials who received such training in the past are increasingly recognizing women in prostitution as potential victims of trafficking and therefore not arresting them for solicitation. Bihar. In Jharkhand (with a population of 29 million people). This is a special legislation with stringent provisions for punishing violators and exploiters. particularly from tribal areas from where hundreds of . there are serious distortions in implementation. POLICIES Catholic Church. in collaboration with an NGO. protect and rehabilitate the victims requires that organized fellowship like Diocesan Women’s Fellowship for Christian Services enabled to build its capacity to address the issue. cooperates with partner organizations in dioceses and Religious congregations as well as voluntary organizations to work on prevention. PROSECUTION: GOVERNMENT Indian government authorities made significant progress in law enforcement efforts against sex trafficking and forced child labor during the year. In February 2009. Its mission to prevent. The Church also makes use of its local resources in terms of women. CNI has an intensive base with the community in source areas and has been able to intervene through CNI's resource pool of institutes. it is a fact that most of the provisions of the law remain un-enforced and unimplemented. prohibits trafficking of human beings for any exploitation. youth and pastors to reach out to the larger community and also involves different stakeholders such as the media. For the past 10 years.

and counter terrorism. CHALLENGES: India's central government faces several challenges in demonstrating a more robust anti-trafficking effort: states under the Indian Constitution have the primary responsibility for law enforcement and state-level authorities are limited in their abilities to effectively confront interstate and transnational trafficking crimes. Networking is also a tool for joint advocacy work in seeking the improvement of legislation at international and national levels and their enforcement. As lack of priority. reintegration. is the essential requirement for preventing trafficking. such as a healthy work atmosphere. Caritas prepared draft legislation to present to parliamentarians and scheduled a meeting of all Christian parliamentarians in New Delhi to present them the draft legislation. without any delay whatsoever. particular attention should be paid to the dangers of domestic violence. Since trafficking is an organised crime. in order to strengthen collaboration and coordination of different efforts. Regardless of the targets and focus of the awareness raising. The order of the High Court of Delhi directing that NGOs should be associated with all rescue operations of the Delhi police testifies to the deliverance capability of this partnership. About 22% of traffickers are not prosecuted due to their political backing. The significant problem of public officials' complicity in sex trafficking and forced labor remains largely unaddressed by central and state governments. redressal of grievances and monitoring are instrumental in ensuring that the rescued persons are not retrafficked. The proposed legislation seeks mandatory registration of all domestic workers with an appropriate government agency. protect brothels that exploit victims. and the Indian government faces other equally pressing priorities such as basic healthcare. complicity in trafficking by many Indian law enforcement officials and overburdened courts impede effective prosecutions. an effective networking of the law enforcement agencies with NGOs can make adequate dent in the given situation. These initiatives by individuals and organisations. leave and pension. counselling. time and sensitivity as well as ignorance of the issues concerned are commonly seen as the factors responsible for the present day dismal picture in enforcement. as well as with ecumenical partners in other Churches. after which the agency will officially present the draft to the federal labour and family and social welfare ministries. professional methods of dealing with them are called for. involving a multiplicity of actors linked together in a chain. Corrupt law enforcement officers reportedly continues to facilitate the movement of sex trafficking victims. which are sensitive and committed to the cause. In 2007. as this is often a breeding ground and catalyst for trafficking in human beings. It also wants to fix these workers' minimum wages and other service conditions. RECOMMENDATIONS: There is need for an integrated approach involving all the three components prevention. the victims need to be rescued and rehabilitated. Networking should aim at improving the trans-national assistance and protection to trafficked persons. need to be appreciated and institutionalized. education. protection and prosecution in effectively addressing trafficking. The Church has been successful in organizing various consultations and conferences on trafficking on national and regional level. At the same time there is a need to network within the Church and Church-related organisations. widespread poverty continues to provide a huge source of vulnerable people. Simultaneously. Effective methods of rehabilitation.young tribal women are brought to cities with the promise of jobs. and protect traffickers and brothel keepers from arrest and other threats of enforcement. . Certainty and stringency of punishment of the exploiters.

FAITH PERSPECTIVE God has created women to be agents in his great plan for restoration of justice and peace. and not retreat from the situation they are placed in. because God had a purpose in their lives. Therefore. US Dept of State. women should be united in and with the Spirit of God to work and overcome problems. References:  A Report on Trafficking in Women and Children in India 2002-2003 by NHRC.June 2009 . She cited examples from the Bible of Ruth and Moses who had to move from their place of residence. UNIFEM and ISS Project  Research Study on Human Right Violation of Victims of Trafficking Conducted by Social Action Forum for Manvaadhikar  The Caritas Internationalis Commitment on Combating Trafficking in Human Beings . They are to be agents to bring joy in the lives of the oppressed.October 2005  Trafficking in Persons Report.

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