Nepal | August 12, 2020

Police intensify crack down on sex workers

Ujjwal Satyal
Share Now:

Kathmandu, August 28

Metropolitan Police Range, Kathmandu, has intensified action against people involved in ‘illicit behaviour’ and prostitution of late.

In the last one month (from mid-July to mid-August), police arrested 121 persons involved in ‘illegal’ sex trade.

Of the total arrested, 25 were transgender, according to police. Police had arrested them from Durbar Marg, Sorhakhutte, Balaju and Kalimati.

Superintendent of Police at MPR Ashok Singh said most of the sex workers were arrested from the road sides in Durbar Marg and Sorhakhutte while they were looking for clients.

Similarly, others were arrested from various restaurants and inns located in Raniban and Balaju area.

SP Singh said, “We arrested them after confirming that they were involved in sex trade which is not legal in the country.” They were released shortly after convincing them not to indulge in such activities in future, according to Singh.

However, women activists objected to the police crackdown on sex workers saying everyone was free to choose their profession. They also said many women were forced into sex trade due to poor economic condition.

All sex workers were kept in police custody for social offence under Section 118 of the Criminal Code Act which bars people from indulging in any kind of indecent behaviour in public places. Section 119 of the act bars people from promoting sex trade and Section 120 bars people from renting out their houses, land, or vehicles for the purpose.

The act, however, has not mentioned anywhere that sex trade is illegal and it is a punishable crime, claim activists. Advocate and woman rights activist Meera Dhungana said that laws in the country had neither termed sex trade legal nor illegal.

“Making sex trade legal will have many negative impacts in a closed society like ours. Similarly making it illegal could render many people unemployed,” she said. She also said that the police crackdown on sex workers was wrong and was a violation of their human rights.

Similarly, Pinky Gurung, president of Blue Diamond Society, said police action against sex workers, especially the sexual minorities, was guided by personal prejudice rather than legal provisions. “Until and unless the government and its bodies understand that sexual minorities are forced to engage in such profession due to lack of citizenship and recognition, our community will continue to face these problems,” Gurung added.

Meanwhile, Advocate and President of Collective Campaign for Peace Badri Prasad Bhusal said since sex trade was taken as an act of human trafficking under Human Trafficking Transportation (Control) Act and police action against sex workers could be justified.

A version of this article appears in print on August 29, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.

Follow The Himalayan Times on Twitter and Facebook

Recommended Stories:

More from The Himalayan Times:

Europa League, Shakhtar Donetsk

Four-goal Shakhtar set up Europa semi against Inter

GELSENKIRCHEN: Shakhtar Donetsk booked a clash with Inter Milan in the Europa League semi-finals after goals from Brazilians Junior Moraes, Taison, Alan Patrick and Dodo gave them a 4-1 win over FC Basel in a one-sided last-eight clash on Tuesday. The Ukrainian champions will take on In Read More...

Woman, daughter held in Gongabu murder case

Kathmandu, August 11 Nepal Police today made public the woman, who was arrested on the charge of murdering a man in Gongabu. The headless body of Krishna Bahadur Bohora, 45, of Rolpa was found inside a suitcase, around 100meters away from her rented room at Ganesthan, Gongabu on Sunday. Pol Read More...

COVID-19 likely to persist until India gets rid of it: Health Minister

Kathmandu, August 11 Minister of Health and Population Bhanubhakta Dhakal has said the risk of COVID-19 will remain in Nepal until the pandemic is totally contained in India. Addressing the 61st Anniversary Programme of Paropakar Maternity and Gynaecology Hospital here today, he argued that as Read More...

Bajura village cut off from rest of Nepal

BAJURA, AUGUST 11 Ajaytodki village in Ward 2 of Gaumul Rural Municipality in Bajura has been cut-off from the rest of the country for the past two days after the swollen Budhiganga River swept away a bailey bridge at Jadanga along the Sanfe-Martadi road. The sweeping away of the bridge has disco Read More...

Informal, salaried workers hit hard by COVID-19 in Kathmandu valley: Study

Kathmandu, August 11 Nearly 29 per cent of the respondents interviewed by Kathmandu Metropolitan City in a survey on ‘Impact of COVID-19 on Livelihood’ said their families were stressed due to the uncertain future facing them in the metropolis. Families living in rented rooms or houses sai Read More...

Bharatpur Hospital

Human resource crunch hits COVID lab

CHITWAN, AUGUST 11 Bharatpur COVID-19 laboratory built in April in a short period of time, is struggling to perform. Shortage of human resources has marred the laboratory’s service delivery. The lab established under Bharatpur Hospital has not made any visible progress compared to its initia Read More...

COVID spreads at community level in Rautahat

Rautahat, August 11 COVID-19 infection has been spreading at the community level in Rautahat. As many as 11 persons, including a youth leader, a petrol pump owner and an assistant health worker of Pothiyahi health post, have tested positive for the virus in Garuda Municipality today. It is Read More...

Democrat Joe Biden chooses US Senator Kamala Harris for White House running mate

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden on Tuesday picked Senator Kamala Harris as his choice for vice president, making her the first Black woman on a major-party US presidential ticket and giving him a partner well prepared to go on the attack against Republican President Donald Trump. Read More...