• Were trying to board a flight to New Delhi
KATHMANDU: Police on Saturday arrested eight persons, including four women, from Tribhuvan International Airport, as they were about to board a Jet Air flight for New Delhi. The four women, aged 19-34, had carried passports with visa for an undisclosed Gulf country while the men were in possession of citizenship certificates only. Two of the women are natives of Nuwakot and one each are from Sindhupalchowk and Tanahun. Police said the men are also from the same districts and suspected their involvement in attempted trafficking of the women into Gulf countries via India. TIA police handed over them, along with the passports bearing stamp seal of Immigration Office, to the Central Investigation Bureau for further investigation. Police have stepped up vigilance in earthquake-affected areas, international borders, TIA, makeshift camps, transportation system and border areas to tackle with human trafficking and bring culprits to book after the cases of trafficking in women and girls surged in the aftermath of the post-disaster situation. According to UNICEF, at least 245 children have been intercepted from being trafficked and unnecessarily or illegally placed in children’s care homes since the first earthquake hit Nepal almost two months ago. The children’s organisation said it is collaborating with the Ministry of Women Children and Social Welfare and Central Child Welfare Board, as well as the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Nepal Police and the Department of Immigration to mitigate risk of trafficking through policy measures and direct response. Trafficking was rife in Nepal even before the April 25 earthquake, with an estimated 12,000 Nepali children trafficked to India every year, according to a 2001 International Labour Organisation study. After disasters such as earthquakes, there is a risk that trafficking will increase, UNICEF warned.