If it weren’t for the rains, she would still have been living with her family. Or maybe not! But who are we to say otherwise. The rains stopped her, delayed her journey, made her take shelter in that cripple of a shack where she was welcomed by two uncouth men. Of course she never made it home but found herself in the back of a pick-up truck in a city that was unknown and unseen. The tall buildings seemed fancy but it all turned gloomy when she was taken to a shelter where there were other girls like her; scared, exhausted and lost. Back in Chhattisgarh, her family began the search for her but they soon lost all hopes. After all, she wasn’t the first girl who had gone missing. The family knew their girl must be working somewhere; maybe as a bonded labor, or a house help or as a sex worker.
Human Trafficking has gripped India badly. In Chhattisgarh alone, which is one the poorest states in India, more than 10,500 children went missing between 2011- 2013, all believed to have been trafficked out of the state or country. Relief India Trust is one of the NGOs that is working towards freeing such children from the forced labor and reuniting them with the family. But unless the law enforcement agencies step in, the results won’t be very effective.
As per UNICEF, Human Trafficking is defined as any person under 18 who is recruited, transported, transferred, harbored or received for the purpose of exploitation, either within or outside a country. Sadly, in India, children from poor houses are often sold by the family to work as domestic help or labor and in worst case scenario forced into prostitution. Relief India Trust believes that there needs to be a strict law criminalizing human trafficking and indicting the traffickers involved.