Traffickers using formal channels to sneak out women, children

Trafficking of women and children from Nepal has reached far beyond the control of government authorities who continued to hold on to the notion that trafficked victims were bound only for the brothels in India, according to the latest finding. 

The authorities are unaware of the fact that in recent years the traffickers have started to use formal channels of labor and migration to smuggle out women and children from the country, a recently issued report of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has revealed. 

The NHRC report prepared drawing statistics from various governmental and non-governmental organizations makes an alarming estimation of trafficking in Nepali women and children. 


While 11,500 women and children were trafficked in the fiscal year 2010/11, the number increased to 29,000 in 2013/14, states the commission’s report.
“As the scope and nature of trafficking has expanded, so has the trafficking rackets, thus, demanding effective monitoring of formal and informal organizations such as marriage bureaus, recruitment agencies, travel agencies and others,” states the report. 

However, the number of cases filed against trafficking at the security agencies are quite nominal compared to the estimated numbers. 
Only 144 cases of trafficking were filed at Nepal Police Women Cell, reports the Commission. 

Activists working in this field point to the great loophole between government policy and the ground reality. “Trafficking incidents have taken on new dimensions that the concerned authorities dismiss as foreign employment issues,” said Anuradha Koirala of Maiti Nepal. 

The data compiled by National Women’s Commission for the fiscal year 2011/12 is backed by Koirala who said out of a total of 98 incidents compiled from newspapers 56 trafficking cases were related to foreign employment. 

Using common sense while granting the citizenship and passport could check most of the problems says Koirala.

When a teenage girl reaches district administration office along with her parents to get citizenship card, the officials never bother to cross-check her actual age before issuing the card. Thus, girls under the age of 15 receive citizenship that shows them to be of 27, which is increases their vulnerability of being trafficked, Koirala claimed. 

“The guardians and district administration offices are complicit in this scheme and it is helping the traffickers thrive,” claims Koirala. 

Rashmila Shakya, program coordinator at CWIN, said that the vulnerability of girl child to trafficking has also increased in absence of empowerment and awareness program. 
“The problem is getting worse as people are trapped in a dreadful cycle of poverty,” Shakya claimed.

Meanwhile, the officials at the Ministry of Home and Affairs (MoHA) said that chief district officers are authorized to coordinate with all the stakeholders at local level for raising awareness and taking actions. 

Still, many people do not go to the police to report the problem, which complicates the task of identifying culprits later, claims Dipak Poudel, under secretary at the Human Rights Cell of the MoHA.

Source: Republica