Prostitution of Nepalese girls rampant in Indian brothels

Kolkata, Nov 21: The prostitution of Nepalese girls aged between 12-18 years remains prevalent in brothels in the Indian cities, according to a study by Switzerland-based voluntary organisation 'Terre des Hommes Foundation'.

Kolkata, Nov 21: The prostitution of Nepalese girls aged between 12-18 years remains prevalent in brothels in the Indian cities, according to a study by Switzerland-based voluntary organisation 'Terre des Hommes Foundation'.
''Despite the efforts of the police in Mumbai and Kolkata, the prostitution of Nepalese children remains prevalent in the
brothels,'' the study pointed out.

''Young girls are trafficked from Nepal to brothels in Mumbai and Kolkata at an average age of twelve. They are trapped into the vicious cycle of prostitution, debt and slavery. By the time they are in their mid-twenties, they are at the dead end or 'Cul-de-sac','' the study noted.

''These women were often rejected by their families in Nepal
and very few could go back to their homeland due to the stigma
of being a sex-worker,'' the recently released report said.

The main aim of the study was to make the NGOs, national
and international organisations and government aware about
the prevalence of girl child trafficking and methodologies of
preventing the phenomenon.

The study was conducted to facilitate social reintegration
of the trafficked girl children, especially those who wanted
to leave prostitution.

The target groups of the study were selected from brothels
in Mumbai and Kolkata.

Apart from the sex-workers, clients, brothel owners and
local informants were also interviewed.

The objective of the study was to understand the dynamics
of prostitution, especially the Nepalese women, economics and
demand forces and the real social and physical blockades faced
by these women.

The study also threw light on the impact of the HIV/AIDS
on these sex-workers.

HIV/ AIDS have forced many sex-workers to leave Kamathipura
in Mumbai, thought to be the epicentre of HIV/AIDS, the study
observed.

''The outcome of the report has been disturbing as even after
winning freedom from the shackles of the brothel owners, all of the women eventually returned to sex-work,'' said Reinhard Fichtl,
delegate of the Terre de Homes, Nepal.

The report pointed out that brothel base sex-work had a long
history in Mumbai going back to the 17th century. However, there had been significant changes in prostitution in Mumbai.

''HIV/AIDS had been devastating with HIV-positive rate of sex-workers in Central Mumbai being 60%. Business in the old
brothel areas of Kamathipua and Khetwadi/Falkland areas has
diminished due to client fear of HIV/AIDS and police raids on the brothels,'' it observed.

In Mumbai the dominant populations of the brothels include
girls form Karnataka, Nepal and Bangladesh, it added.

Bureau Report

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