India Is To Have a Dedicated Anti-Human Trafficking Wing under NIA

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India Is To Have a Dedicated Anti-Human Trafficking Wing under NIA

“Tahmina had left her home with her elder sister and brother-in-law. She thought they were going to Delhi. Instead, she was taken to a remote village in Haryana and sold into marriage with a man almost 30 years older than her.”

Tahmina was eventually rescued. But sadly, this is a common problem across the nation, where millions of young girls and women are trapped in the clutches of sexual slavery and domestic abuse.

A Dedicated Anti-Human Trafficking Wing In-the-Making

To combat such accelerating rates and figures of trafficking, the Centre has planned to develop a focused anti-human trafficking wing under Central Investigation Agency, like National Investigation Agency. Expected to function under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Rs. 324 Crores has been proposed to be allocated from the Nirbhaya Fund of the Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD) for the noble cause of Women Safety. As of now, India lacks a dedicated investigating agency to file human trafficking cases; thus, the latest move is going to garner a lot of attention from the masses.

“The WCD had written to the home ministry earlier asking it to create a dedicated set up within a investigating agency like NIA to probe trafficking cases and coordinate investigation into trafficking networks operating across states and beyond India,” a source from MHA said.

Loopholes in the Current Judicial System

Unfortunately, India is a country that scores the highest when it comes to the number of people entrapped in modern-day slavery in the world. The appalling figure stands at 18 million people. There is an urgent need for a comprehensive legal framework to put together all the existing multifarious laws and introduce an army of new offences that were not earlier included in the punishment list under the erstwhile legal structure. Such measures will increase conviction rates, as well as penalizing perpetrators.

On this context, Ravi Kant, the president of NGO Shakti Vahini stated, “Traffickers enjoy immunity because local police agencies are not able to probe inter-state or cross-border crimes. We require a nodal agency as 80-90% of trafficking cases span across various states”.

Plug in the loopholes

The WCD proposed Trafficking of Persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation) Bill 2016 is just what we need now. Ashamed by crippling global figures, India swears its allegiance to creating a strong legal, economic and social environment to fight off trafficking and to plug in all the loopholes existing in the current system, and this bill fit the boxes so well. Furthermore, the Centre is on its way to draft a new legislation on anti-human trafficking and set up a dedicated crime investigating agency, solely to probe into human trafficking cases. Though the talks regarding these processes and constitution have already started in the Parliament, what we are waiting for is its implementation.

Need for Technology

We’re in a time and space that allows global corporations and governments to streamline policy and production processes on a phone application. 3 person startups are building products, programs and resources to trigger global movements and optimize highly efficient conversion funnels.

We’re using technology to educate and influence millions of people on a daily basis. And this technology is now accessible. In fact, India has leapfrogged its way to being Facebook’s biggest audience base in the world.

This approach needs to permeate in the social cause space. Bodies tackling social issues like trafficking can benefit greatly from the immense reach and engagement potential of digital friendly solutions.

At Missing, technology plays a key role in shaping our trafficking awareness initiatives. In 2015, Missing launched its maiden tech initiative, the Missing: Game For A Cause. The game puts you in the shoes of Champa, a young trafficked girl and lets you experience the frustration, anger and helplessness she endures with. It is a Role Playing Game and a perfect tech-tool to spread awareness about sexual trafficking. The game now has more than half a million downloads across 70+ countries. Interestingly, our biggest communities are in Bangladesh, India, USA, Brazil and Philippines…. countries that have high rates of human trafficking.

Learn more about the project

Last year, we also launched a Missing Mural Walk, which is a 6-city Public Art Project that uses a Facebook chatbot to allow viewers to talk to the art. This is an important initiative that focuses on engaging urban audiences in India on the subject of trafficking in a more user friendly manner. This approach to awareness allows people to view the subject in a new light. Have you taken a tour of Missing Mural Walk?

Check out the project