Business conferences and commercial events are serving as a new front for flesh trade with girls from various states being trafficked for these events in Goa, an city-based NGO has alleged. Of late, the trend of trafficking girls in the name of business conferences in Goa has been an area of grave concern, NGO Anyay Rahit Zindagi (ARZ), working towards rescue and rehabilitation of victims of flesh trade and commercial sexual exploitation, said. “There is a new phenomenon in which girls are recruited through event management agency by the companies holding their conferences in Goa. They are also indulged in prostitution during the conferences,” ARZ director Arun Pandey alleged while talking to mediapersons on Tuesday.
Several girls from a film city in Andhra Pradesh were rescued by police from Anjuna when they were brought by Andhra Pradesh-based fertilizer firm for their conference in Goa. The conference was to entertain the distributors, Pandey further alleged. In the recent past, two raids were conducted by Goa police on similar conferences where girls were employed for prostitution, he said.
In collaboration with Goa Directorate of Women and Child Development, ARZ today began a two-day long consultation to formulate strategy to check human trafficking for sexual exploitation in Goa. The government and NGO representatives from Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, West Bengal, Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram, which are considered as a source states for trafficking, are participating in consultation programme. Police officials, who raided a few conferences, said they were surprised during their investigations that a new front has been emerging in the state. “The girls were found to have been brought with the proper knowledge of what they have to do during the conference in the guise of event management,” police inspector Gurudas Kadam, who cracked down the racket run by an Andhra Pradesh based company, told a gathering in Panaji.
Women and Child Development department Director Sanjiv Gadkar said the state government will network with the source states to verify whether the event management companies organising conferences in Goa have valid registrations. Consultations with the source states will help the state government in their efforts to ascertain the background of the girls who are usually employed in the event management during the conferences, Gadkar said.