With a one-year-old baby girl on her lap and husband beside her, Sudha (name changed) has been resolutely sitting outside the Kolar Deputy Commissioner’s office since Thursday. A victim of human trafficking and rape, this Dalit woman has been demanding compensation due to her for nearly five years.
A resident of a village in the rural police limits, Sudha was allegedly lured by Rajanna, an ‘upper caste’ man from the village, on the pretext of providing a lucrative job and was eventually pushed to prostitution in early 2010.
After going through the trafficking chain with several intermediaries, she was first sold to people in Gorintu in Andhra Pradesh and eventually ended up at a brothel in Delhi. She managed to escape from the clutches of the people at the brothel and returned to her village in 2010 end. She filed a police complaint with the Kolar Rural police.
Though she was married before being lured away, she was abandoned by her husband after the incident. Sudha remarried and the couple have a baby.
Records not right
Deputy Commissioner K.V. Thrilokchandra told The Hindu that compensation was not released to her under provisions of the atrocities Act as, according to district Social Welfare Department officials, both parties involved in the case belong to the Dalit community.
However, when this correspondent pointed out that the accused was an ‘upper caste’ man, he verified and admitted that “a mistake in the police report” had caused the “confusion”. Sudha said the error in the initial stage of investigation was “deliberate” and not an oversight as claimed by the officials.
Karnataka Dalita Nagarika Samiti district general secretary Gandjinagar Venugopal charged the Social Welfare Department officials with “negligence” in providing proper compensation to the victim. “Though the Superintendent of Police directed the social welfare officer to providing relief, no action was taken,” he said.
“I have directed the district official to rectify the records and release compensation on Monday,” Mr. Thrilokchandra said.
The social welfare officer in charge was not available for comment.
Goof-up in police records cited as reason for delay; victim calls it ‘deliberate’