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Two-day workshop for sensitising police officers to victims of trafficking
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21 January 2008
Around 40 police officers vowed to develop a more human outlook towards the victims of flesh trade at a workshop organised by the Pune police on anti-human trafficking laws on Thursday.
Additional commissioner of police (administration) Shobha Ohatker said the two-day workshop was aimed at sensitising the police officers towards the victims of prostitution.
"Certain case-studies were presented before the cops. They were also told about the precautions to be taken while recording statements of victims, especially minors," Ohatker said.
Project Co-ordinator of United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNDOC)
P.M. Nair and Preeti Patkar from Mumbai-based Prerna took the sessions.
Nair said that the UNDOC has been conducting sessions for policemen and public prosecutors on anti-human trafficking act. Till date, it has trained around 10,160 police officers and public prosecutors in five states - Maharashtra, Goa, West Bengal, Bihar and Andhra Pradesh - in a span of last one and half years.
"The aim is to bring out quality manuals for the law enforcers along with establishing an
anti-human trafficking set-up. The workshop also tries to form an NGO-police network," Nair said.
Nair expressed satisfaction at the results of the workshop. "There has been a sea change in the way cases related to human trafficking and prostitution are being handled. 'Buyers' were held and brothel homes closed," Nair said. The UNDOC also works for rehabilitating the rescued girls, he added.
Nair said that several police officers, who attended the workshop, admitted that they were unaware of certain provisions of law. "We just tried to explain them the prominent features of anti-human trafficking laws. It is all about looking at victim as a victim and not as an accused," he added.
Around 592 cases of human trafficking were registered in the five states last year. "In 104 operations, 933 victims were rescued of which 136 were minors. Around 1,295 traffickers along with 419 customers were arrested in all," he informed. The UNDOC has undertaken 54 sessions in Maharashtra and trained 1,772 policemen till date.