Andhra Pradesh now has the appalling distinction of being ranked second in country for human trafficking. While India itself ranked fourth amongst 167 countries to be trafficking people, the fact that AP comes second in the country is alarming.
According to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), India has been the significant source, transit point and destination for trafficking, with 90% of it done domestically.
Humans are being trafficked from the backward areas of AP, Telangana, Odisha, Rajasthan, Bihar, Karnataka, UP, MP and West Bengal to Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Goa and Chennai. While trafficking people is alarming enough, it is reported that 80% of the people trafficked are women and girls with 60% of them being minors. 40% of these trafficked girls face sexual exploitation. 32 lakh women and girls are involved in prostitution, 12 lakh of them being underage, at 1104 brothels in the country.
A study by the National Human Rights Commission states that Krishna, East Godavari, Anantapur, Visakhapatnam, West Godavari and Guntur districts are the key points where the exploitation takes place with Hyderabad and Guntur being the destinations. 60% of the girls trafficked from here are minors with Vijayawada being the main transit hub for trafficking.
Despite there being stringent laws in place for both trafficking and prostitution, especially of minors, it is shameful to see such alarming data surface. Dr SV Bhavani, state project officer, told TOI, “While we gave stringent laws on paper, their implementation is very poor.”
Reportedly, after the state bifurcation, rehabilitation of rescued women and children has been at an all-time low in the last two and half years. The state has shown very poor implementation in terms of creating awareness about the same. Apart from sexual exploitation, these trafficked victims go through bonded labour, organ transplantation and molecule testing too.
*Feature Image used for representational purpose only