Couple Runs Brothel in New Delhi, Confesses to Traffic 5000 GirlsOctober 24, 2016 12:36
Human Trafficking has become a huge business nowadays. Girls in all age are forced into prostitution. In a shocking incident, a wife and husband were held for running a human trafficking racket. Affaq Husain and his wife Saira used to run a racket in the national capital. They have forced thousands of underaged girls hailing from 24 Parganas district in West Bengal and Nepal into the flesh trade in New Delhi.
Husain uses to trap girls in different ways. After Nepal earthquake in the year 2015, Husain left for Kathmandu with his key aides. A Nepali woman named Piya Thapa was also working with him.
He to visit areas where there were less population and uneducated people. He used to pose himself as an educationist and asked parents to send their daughters with him to India. He promised that in India their daughters will get a good education.
In return for sending their child, Hussain uses to give money to each family for rebuilding their homes. Once the girls were sent to him, he uses to smuggle them to all five brothels which he owned. The brothels were located at GB Road in New Delhi and the famous Kotha no 64.
These brothels were the biggest on GB Road. They use to have many secret rooms and large wardrobes where all these girls were hidden in case police raid takes place.
In the confession to the police, Husain and Saira said that they had trafficked more than 5,000 girls in the last 15 years. Each girl would be sold for up to Rs 5 lakh.
When the duo was caught, police recovered assets worth over Rs 100 crore which includes a luxurious and expensive house in Friends Colony. The couple even owned many foreign cars. The bank account had Rs 10 crore.
At the Kotha no 64, two girls were rescued. One hailed from Bengal and other from Nepal. Police asked for birth certificates after they suspected that the girls might be underaged. After Husain's manager provided a certificate, it was handed over to Child Welfare Committee. They confirmed that the certificate was fake and ordered the immediate investigation.
After this police conducted the fresh raid, in which Husain's key aides were arrested who confessed the crime.
"There was so much incriminating evidence against Husain and his wife that the police decided to arrest them under Section 3 and 4 of MCOCA (the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act) instead of registering an offense under the Immoral Trafficking Act," says Rishi Kant, who runs Shakti Vahini, a non-governmental organization. Shakti Vahini is an organization which rescue girls who are trafficked at GB Road for the past three decades.
Police booked the couple under MCOCA so that they cannot apply for bail. Saira was previously arrested in the year 1990 and was send to jail for seven years. In 2001, she got released and started the business again.
Police filed two charge sheets against the couple. In 2016 march the recent charge sheet was filed. They were charged with rape, trafficking, abduction and criminal conspiracy, but police did not take any action against them as high political leaders were also involved.
When the police tried to arrest the couple again this year, around 127 policemen were transferred which include constables and senior officers.
This resulted in 35 brothels being closed out of 90 which are being run on GB road. The police on October 20 arrested Afaq Husain, Saira's Nepalese manager and Damodar Pandey from the Kingsway Camp in New Delhi. Pandey was one of the main culprits who trafficked girls from Nepal. He was the henchmen of Afaq.
"Whenever the police mount a rescue operation, the traffickers, madams and pimps on GB Road receive a tip-off," says Rishi Kant.
"The minor girls are then immediately shifted to Meerut, Jaipur, and Agra. When the situation cools down, they are brought back."
The main reason why these brothels use to run in full spree was because Saira was a prostitute when she was young. She knew everything about the trafficking trade and this helped her to become 'madam' at GB Road brothels.
She got married to Husain after which they established their business in the north-east and Nepal.
"We have created a task force which is reaching out to schoolgirls in 24 Parganas," says Rishi Kant, who is presently an adviser to the West Bengal government on how to end trafficking. "The police has also been sensitized and is now taking the issue more seriously."
P M Nayyar, who is retired as the director general of the Central Reserve Police Force presently works with the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, spoke about how to prevent trafficking. He said, "the traffickers have succeeded in expanding their footprint across the globe, with girls being trafficked from Thailand, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lank, and India's northeastern, southern states and tribal areas."
"Traffickers are using new technology," says Nayyar.
"A girl reported missing in Nepal was to be found in Pune. Another girl missing in Bangladesh is recovered in Thane."
"The police and other investigating agencies need regional systems of technological integration across all SAARC nations to track these girls because traffickers are using the garb of placement agencies, massage parlors, escort agencies etc to run these rackets," Nayyar adds.
"It is a mistake to think only poor tribal or under-privileged girls are being trafficked. Girls from all strata of society are being trafficked," he warns.
"In Jharkhand," Nayyar says, "a couple was arrested with Rs 10 crore in assets. How did they succeed in making so much money?"
"If a parent registers a complaint of a missing child," Bharti Ali, who heads HAQ: Centre for Child Rights, points out, "the police will pass on this information to the trafficking department after four months. This gives traffickers enough time to smuggle the child into another state."
"The investigation on the missing child should be undertaken immediately," Ali emphasizes, "because a kidnapped child is usually kept in the same vicinity for a few days before being taken to a new destination."
"The police just does not know how to tackle this situation," says Ali.
"Earlier, girls in the age group of 10 to 12 were being trafficked. Today, kids between 3 and 4 years are being trafficked for begging, pornography, etc. Young boys are also being trafficked in very large numbers," Ali adds.
Dr. Sunita Krishnan, who heads the Bangalore-based NGO Parivartan, also gave her opinion. She feels that the only way to deal with this kind of people is that consolidated effort should be made by the government and civil society to fight this evil.
"HIV was fought at a national level. We need to do the same with trafficking," says Dr. Krishnan. "Anti-trafficking has to be developed into a national program with much better inter-state coordination."
"We are failing. We are losing the fight against the traffickers," says Rishi Kant, "and the government must realize this. This is because no one wants to support the victims."
"I can cite you the example of a girl who was kidnapped from West Bengal and brought to Delhi. She has deposed before the court five to six times, but each time her case gets adjourned. The traffickers would hire the best lawyers and even the lower judiciary seems indifferent to their plight," says Rishi Kant.
"The victims receive no support. Ultimately, where should the vulnerable girls and women go? They don't get support from anyone."
Also Read: Women Trafficking Gang Arrested in Chittoor
BY M. DIVYA SRI