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Home > India > News > Report

20% of north-east teens become sex workers: Study

June 13, 2008 11:48 IST

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A Guwahati-based non governmental organistaion, which conducted a study recently, has claimed that about 20 per cent of teenagers of the north-eastern region, between 11-17 years, are being compelled to become sex workers.

In the study titled 'Rise in Child Prostitution in the north-east', the Global Organisation for Life Development stated that a five per cent rise had been registered in children getting involved in sex rackets from the past year.

The NGO pointed out that poverty and displacement of population because of violence were the prime reasons behind the increase in the number of children becoming commercial sex workers in the region.

"It is mostly the children of poor parents who are forced to take to prostitution to earn money for the family," the NGO underlined, adding that the study, spanning three months, consisted of field workers interviewing 350 child sex workers throughout the region.

The report also stated most of the children were victims of acute physical torture and "they are initially raped and flogged almost to death to take up the profession."

The GOLD officials also underscored that almost half of the child sex workers were from Assam, followed by Meghalaya, Manipur, Tripura, Nagaland, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh, while some of the victims were trafficked to brothels in Mumbai, Pune and Ahmedabad.

"We have reports that sheikhs from the Middle East are also buying north-eastern girls from these brothels. Also, trafficking gangs from southeast Asian countries are taking a keen interest in the girls because of their Mongoloid features," GOLD director Rajeev Sharma said.

"The region is vulnerable as it shares international borders with Bhutan, China, Myanmar and Bangladesh," he added.