Arunen­dra Pandey, of Arz, a Goabased NGO work­ing to re­ha­bil­i­tate sex work­ers

Governance Now - - LAW -

The bill fails on re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion and cre­ation of al­ter­na­tive liveli­hoods. it talks about shel­ter-based re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion in two kinds of homes – pro­tec­tion homes and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion homes. How­ever, both are gen­er­ally re­jected by vic­tims of com­mer­cial sex­ual ex­ploita­tion. These homes can be fine as tem­po­rary shel­ters but not in the long run. What we have been de­mand­ing is com­mu­nity-based, non­shel­ter home-based re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion.

my 15 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence says that many of these women, when they come out, do not want to be caged. Their freedom is cur­tailed in the name of be­ing pro­vided ser­vices. They want to live a life like you and me, with freedom. We need to talk about their liveli­hood separately. The gov­ern­ment fails to do this. more­over, the bill fails to give pro­tec­tion to vic­tims. all these rea­sons could re­sult in re-traf­fick­ing. Eighty per­cent of the res­cued women want to come out from the dark world of traf­fick­ing, but we need bet­ter re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion mea­sures and al­ter­na­tives.

The gov­ern­ment can­not re­ha­bil­i­tate a bonded labourer in the same man­ner as some­one who has been sex­u­ally ex­ploited. are they go­ing to give the same kind of ser­vices to all vic­tims? The kind of abuse vic­tims re­ceived is dif­fer­ent. They can­not be treated in the same man­ner. Both need a dif­fer­ent kind of coun­selling and emo­tional sup­port. The bill is fine on pa­per, but it lacks the

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