Arz urges women’s commission to push for it with the Goa government

Arz, an organisation working to combat human trafficking, has urged to the National Commission for Women (NCW) to prevail upon the Goa government to set up a special court to look into cases of trafficking.

Goa is a ‘destination State’, where a large number of victims sourced from other States or countries are brought. After the victims are rescued, they are repatriated to their native State or country, so many are not available for deposition at the trial. As a result, traffickers often get acquitted, the organisation has said.

A petition in this regard was submitted by Arunendra Kumar Pandey, director of the Vasco-based group, to Mamata Sharma, chairperson of the commission, and a copy sent to Sreerupa Mitra Chaudhury, chairperson of the special task force on rape and violence against women, here on March 25.

They were here to visit the mechanised laundry unit, Swift Wash, run by Arz in Vasco for economic rehabilitation of victims of commercial sexual exploitation. The unit was established in 2006 and more than 330 victims have received rehabilitation services, Mr. Pandey said.

Rehabilitation

In the petition, Arz sought the commission’s help in ensuring the implementation of the Prabhat scheme for rehabilitation of victims of commercial sexual exploitation in Goa. The scheme was drafted by the government in collaboration with Arz.

Mr. Pandey also made a plea for fast implementation of a national scheme for the non-institutional rehabilitation of victims of commercial sexual exploitation as well as sex workers. The scheme prepared by a panel constituted by the Supreme Court was based on the Prabhat scheme, he said.

Arz asked the commission to urge the Goa State government to collaborate with Arz in setting up more Swift Wash laundry units.

Besides, the group brought to the NCW’s notice the plight of the victims of Baina, once a red-light area of Mormugoa, who were displaced in demolitions in June 2004, but still had not been rehabilitated. The Goa Bench of the Bombay High Court had directed the government in January this year to grant relief to those affected in six months. The NCW should ensure this, Arz said.

Use of ICT

Calling for the use of information and communications technologies to combat human trafficking, Arz sought the help of NCW in implementing specially developed software in different States. It has developed PAT (persons accused of trafficking) and IPI (information of persons in institutions) software, which would help police to track traffickers and the social welfare departments to monitor the functioning of institutions.

Arz has been appointed the ‘nodal NGO’ of the Integrated Anti-Human Trafficking Unit by the Goa police, it added.


  • ‘Implement scheme for rehabilitation of victims of commercial sexual exploitation’

  • ‘NCW should ensure relief to victims of Baina’


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