Stepping up efforts against human trafficking, Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) moved the entire force leadership, Director General SSB included, in one of the most affected areas of Sonbarsa in the Sitamarhi district of Bihar, with an aim to help in fighting this scourge. The SSB has launched an awareness campaign to educate and sensitize locals of the area along the friendly border with Nepal.
According to Archana Ramasundaram, DG SSB, the locals were vulnerable to human trafficking across borders, both in the Sonbarsa and areas of Nepal, due to lack of education and employment.
“Since 2015, the SSB has rescued around 600 victims of human trafficking, both of Indian and Nepalese origin, who were destined for places like Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Ludhiana, Chennai on pretext of employment, better life, monetary benefits and false marriage alliances. The instances of human trafficking along the Indo-Nepal border have also grown from eight in 2014 to 73 in 2015, 408 in 2016. Till the end of August 2017 303 victims of this menace have been rescued,” she said.
Ramasundaram also emphasised on the fact that all the operations are carried out based on intelligence and the locals are to be encouraged and informed accordingly, so they can contribute in apprehending such people who are involved in illegal activities like smuggling, trafficking etc.
However, she said that the force has to be very sensitive while delivering its duty as the locals have age old relations across border and have a ‘Roti and Beti ‘ relationship.
SSB has also incorporated skill development as a measure to help these victims.
The DIG Armed Police Forc(APF) Nepal Narendra Kumar Singh, on the sidelines of the event, said that the innocent people of the area were allured by the racketeers portraying false hopes of making those rich, promising roles in movies and misguiding them in all possible ways.
He also said, “As the border is friendly and people move freely for their day to day work, the things are monitored peacefully in cooperation with SSB. SSB has also initiated to skill the victims to make them self dependent.”
These victims are being trained under skill development initiative of SSB with NSDC and now were placed into jobs based on that. These are being trained in batches.
Also, the force has got into awareness campaign by launching two buses with trained people and literature to make the population along the border more aware, sensitive and responsive towards assisting the hapless victims.
On that note, by now, from Sitamarhi district alone, 132 victims have been rescued.