A 16 year old girl’s escape from a prostitution ring in Delhi’s red light area has put light on a major prostitution ring that was being run by a Muslim couple, while being lodged in Tihar jail in Delhi. The girl was rescued by a team of the Paschim Banga Police from brothel number 56, which was owned by Afaq Husain and Saria Begum, who are believed to have been in the business of trafficking innocent girls for prostitution for the last 17 years. The couple has been arrested almost 7 times in the past and are currently under arrest as the stringent charges of the non bailable Maharashtra Control of Organized Crime Act (MCOCA) have been slapped against them.
This has not stopped them from plying their trade in Delhi’s red light area, G B Road as they continued their business as usual. The girl was forcibly taken away from her hometown of Durgapur, which is in Paschim Banga in the year 2014 and was pushed into the flesh trade. The girl showed immense presence of mind, by calling her father, by borrowing a customer’s mobile phone. The call’s location was traced by the Paschim banga police with the help of the Delhi Police and the girl was successfully rescued.
According to Delhi Police’s Crime Branch, most of the prostitution on GB Road is controlled by 2-3 operators, of which the Muslim couple is one. The Delhi Police had raided GB Road in 2016, when the girl was still there, but she was not helped, points towards the deep connections of the traffickers with senior politicians and officials. Shakti Vahini is an NGO based out of Paschim Banga and has helped countless such girls to escape the flesh trade.
The Delhi Police has filed an appeal with the Delhi High Court to seal the brothel, but their petition is pending with the court. Most of the victims in brothels come from poor families and are usually taken from their home on the pretext of getting good jobs and getting married.