People in dark about anti-trafficking laws

Kathmandu, October 13:

Communities in six trafficking-prone districts — Sindhupalchok, Sankhusabha, Makwanpur, Rupandehi, Kanchanpur and Sarlahi districts — have a limited understanding of legal provision pertaining to trafficking, a report titled ‘Hearing Community Voice: A Base Line Study on Anti-Trafficking Needs’, which was made public today, stated.

Even government officials and NGO representatives possess limited knowledge on the issue, the report said. The study was conducted with objectives of bringing to light the current scenario in some of the highest trafficking-prone districts and helping work out strategies to combat trafficking.

Presenting the report, Pinky Singh Rana, a research team leader, said, “Knowledge of the grassroots level on trafficking continues to remain vague, as the concept of trafficking is limited mostly to selling of girls into Indian brothels.” Confusion persists between trafficking, foreign employment and prostitution, Rana said, adding that the trend to relate trafficking with sexual abuse persisted.

People of the community believe that future programmes aimed at preventing trafficking will be most effective if they comprise launching of door-to-door campaigns and awareness programmes among disadvantaged groups, the report stated. Saathi and the Lutheran World Federation had conducted the study.