Human trafficking: who is the real criminal?

What is human trafficking?

The trade of human beings for exploitative purposes including bonded and forced labour, commercial sexual exploitation and illegal organ-trade is called ‘human trafficking”. Given the nature of the crime, it also involves forceful and illegal migration of the victims who are traded.

Who are the victims of human trafficking?

Victims of human trafficking in India live amidst us, in our day-to-day surroundings. The most common victims are:

1. Children and young women brought from rural areas or sometimes even other states, to be engaged as domestic help in households or various small-scale establishments in urban centres. Many of these people eventually get exploited economically, physically and also sexually.

2. Children and adolescents begging or selling knick-knacks on the streets in towns and cities.

3. Women and children sold into commercial sex trade market

4. People lured to foreign countries by fraudulent recruitment agencies with lucrative job offers, to be employed in menial work involving inhuman working conditions.

5. The victims of the illegal organ trade racket.

How do we identify the victims of human trafficking?

In case of children employed in households or establishments in our neighbourhoods, we can stay alert for signs of oppression which make themselves evident in the form of withdrawn and anxious behaviour of the child, physical marks of assault etc. In such instances, we can lodge a complaint with the local police on behalf of these children. We can also approach Childline, the emergency helpline for children in distress, at 1098.

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