Rajnath Singh vows to curb human trafficking menace
Concerned over increasing numbers of trafficking due to poor coordination among the state agencies, the union home ministry took a firm stand to curb the menace and have decided to open an additional 100 Anti-Human Trafficking Units (AHTUs) across the nation.
Presently, there are 225 such units functional in India and with the addition to new AHTUs the ministry officials are hoping for a downfall in the number of such cases in India.
While addressing the 18th review meeting of the states and union territory, home secretary Anil Goswami said, ‘The AHTUs will be set up in this financial year and all the concern persons in the states were informed.’
Despite having such units in India, Goswami, expressed his displeasure over law enforcement response for not adequately dealing with the burning issue. ‘I would like to request the law enforcing agencies to have greater coordination among the states for effective results. I would also like to request them for proper utilization of the recent amendment in the Criminal Amendment Act 2013 and provisions of the Money Laundering Act to crack down upon rampant human-trafficking,’ he said.
The home secretary claimed that due to lack of proper investigation and punitive measures in such cases, trafficking has gone beyond imagination. ‘There are several instances of such crime along the bordering areas of Bangladesh and Nepal but hardly there are any cases which could develop a fear among the criminals. We need to set an example in bringing down the crime,’ he said.
Goswami has called for trust building and effective coordination among various agencies including the border guarding forces, commissions like the National Commission for Women (NCW), National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) and National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and the state law enforcing agencies to deal with the menace.
In the international foray, India is committed to act against human trafficking and already engaged in various international agencies including the United Nations Convention on Transnational Organised Crime (UNTOC) and SAARC Convention on Trafficking in Women and Children besides the bilateral mechanism with Bangladesh.
As per MHA statistic, since AHTU’s establishment in 2011, more than 4,000 rescue operations were done throughout the country and had rescued 13,742 victims. Total 7,087 arrests were made.
Among many states, Rajasthan topped the list of trafficking with 276 cases till 21 January, 2014. ‘Odisha and Uttarakhand stood second and third with 204 and 110 such cases respectively till 21 January, 2014,’ as per MHA statistic.