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Who?s responsible for child prostitution?

They have been forced to opt for the world?s oldest profession ? prostitution ? in their spring. Most of them are not aware of the danger of AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. Discarded by their family members, lovers and even husbands, they have nothing to fall back upon.
By Anupam Srivastava | None, Lucknow
PUBLISHED ON MAY 31, 2006 01:25 AM IST

They have been forced to opt for the world’s oldest profession — prostitution — in their spring. Most of them are not aware of the danger of AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases.  Discarded by their family members, lovers and even husbands, they have nothing to fall back upon. 

To discuss the sorry tale of this miserable lot a workshop on juvenile justice was organised at Hotel Vishwanath in Charbagh here on Monday. The meet threw light on those girls who are forced into prostitution and the role of society.

Atul Sharma from Meerut, in a presentation, dwelt at length on reasons for child prostitution in various parts of western UP, especially in Meerut. Sharma, who has conducted a study on the girls forced into flesh trade by pimps, said, “The problem could only be solved by imparting them vocational training so that they could earn a living. Besides, they should be given a chance to live their life respectfully.”

Sharma said, “In 10 per cent of the cases, the relatives are responsible for forcing a girl into prostitution, and in 12.6 per cent of cases, the neighbours and friends are responsible. Paramours, lovers and even the husbands are responsible in 50 per cent of cases for forcing a girl into prostitution. ”

According to the survey, 5.2 per cent of girls were not properly educated, 50 per cent of them were jobless, 20.8 per cent of them were into the trade due to uncaring attitude of their parents, husbands and domestic fights. Besides, 24 per cent of them were in the trade as they were ditched by their lovers, paramours or married by pimps.

The girls aging 14 to 20 years are forced to work 10 to 12 hours a day and entertain 15 to 20 customers. They earn Rs 50 to 70 and 80 per cent of them are not aware of AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases.

Sharma says that the police always book them under the Immoral Traffic Act because pimps ask them to do so. The pimps get these girls released within a week and force them back into the trade.

Sharma says these girl child should be taken into custody under the Juvenile Act and sent to remand homes for some time where they could be kept away from the clutches of pimps and relatives who force them into prostitution.

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