Centre, State must start directorates for immigrants: Tripurana

Union and State governments need to start a full-fledged directorate to monitor the flow of the people who are going abroad on assignments or jobs, Chairperson of A.P. State Women's Commission Tripurana Venkata Ratnam said.

Talking to The Hindu, on Thursday, she pointed out that a directorate was the need of the hour, as women trafficking was on the rise. “We need a directorate like the NORKA that was initiated by the Kerala Government,” she said.

According to her, trafficking was earlier rampant in the districts of Kadapa and Kurnool, but now the trend has moved towards the coastal districts such as East Godavari, West Godavari, Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram and Srikakulam.

“The Commission has received maximum number of petitions from East Godavari District in the recent past. As of now we have at least 500 women from East Godavari, working mostly in the Gulf countries, in distress,” she said.

Recently the Commission had received a petition, where a woman from East Godavari was sent for a job to Kuwait but without any intimation was moved to Yemen and the family members have lost track of her.

Ms. Venkat Ratnam pointed out that most of the women are being sent under the garb of domestic helps, but are being subjected to menial jobs and also exploited sexually.

Be it Singapore or Malaysia or countries in the Gulf region, innocent women, especially from rural areas and financially weak families are being targeted and lured with promise of good pay and pushed into flesh trade.

“Most of the agents are unauthorised and they promise a job with a salary of about Rs. 30,000 to Rs. 40,000. This is enough to lure a poor girl and once on foreign soil, her passport is impounded by the employer and then subjected to all sorts of torture. At times they do not even pay the promised sum and are made to work for over 20 hours,” said Ms. Venkat Ratnam.

Moreover, the women pay over Rs. 1 lakh to the agents as commission and for which they take loans from private financers at high interest.

The proposed directorate will not only maintain a databank but also keep track of all the persons going out of the country and monitor their status.

“We have also requested the Government to start a helpline at all our embassies for such women,” she said.

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Printable version | Oct 20, 2021 1:50:20 PM |

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