Thriving Brothel Culture
The rural India is plagued with trafficking; the extreme poverty often coerces young girl to seek better livelihood options, wherein they easily get lured by false promises of vile traffickers. The girls are largely illiterate and hail from poor families. Crafty traffickers or brokers easily get hold of these girls through false promises of a better life, comfortable livelihood and dispatch them to metro cities, like Kolkata, Mumbai and Delhi, which are hubs of flesh trade and prostitution.
As the city is expanding, so is the prostitution. According to a report published by the West Bengal Commission for Protection of Child Rights and the NGO International Justice Mission (IJM) on 30th November, 2018, increasing numbers of minor girls are being trafficked across the city brothels, massage parlors, hotels, private houses as well as in outskirts and neighboring districts.
Though for years, Sonagachi has been the prime red light district of South Asia, prostitution is now seeping into myriad hidden pockets across the city. These establishments, contrary to brothels operate in complete secrecy, via an intricate network of pimps, madams and traffickers. These other establishments prefer using trafficked children than brothels, which shares limelight and prime attention; resulting in a spike-up of child trafficking rates.
Two and a half million women and children (around 500.000 prostitutes in India are under 16) are working in the country’s sex industry. Amidst that, 9000 women, many of them trafficked into the country from Bangladesh or Nepal, work in Sonagachi. 60,000 more sex workers area active across Calcutta. Governments, both local and national, do little to tackle the increasing risk of sex trafficking around the vulnerable region.