tv Asia Insight NHK World August 29, 2014 10:30pm-11:01pm JST
♪ the women performing here fell victim to sex traffickers and were forced into prostitution in india. new plays such as this, they are warning others about the trap they were once lured into. these awareness activities are led by an ngo based in kathmandu. the organization was established in 1996 by a group of 15 sex trafficking survivors.
even if trafficking victims are fortunate enough to escape, they often face discrimination back home. the women went public in a bid to change perceptions and put an end to sex trafficking altogether. the group also gives returning victims a place to stay and offers counselling and support to help them back into society. in this episode of "asia insight" we follow the sex traffickers of nepal. women who are fighting prejudice and trying to rebuild their lives.
southern nepal at the border within india. nepalis and indians can cross into each other's country freely as a result of a bilateral treaty signed in 1950, but the poorest border may the trafficking of women easy. police and ngos are working together to crack down on traffickers. still each year more than 10,000 women, mostly teenagers, are smuggled across and forced into a life of prostitution. a few hundred of them succeed in escaping from their captors or are rescued by indian authorities or ngos, but they're
this shelter in a residential area of kathmandu is a place of refuge for 25 sex traffickers aged between 11 and 30. the group has two other such shelters in other parts of the country. she came here six months ago. still just 18 years old, she comes from a nearby village where she worked as a street vendor to support her family. one day a villager she knew tinted her with a trip to india. he said they would work there together and earn good money.
after crossing the border the man handed her over to a complete stranger. she traveled with him for three days and upon arriving in an unfamiliar town she was kept locked up in a small room. when the man who took her from the village returned alone her parents became suspicious and told police. the man revealed where she was being held. she was found in a remote indian town and rescued from being forced into prostitution.
although she made it back, she says she can't return to her village. even though she never worked as a prostitute, she's worried that villages won't believe her and she'll face discrimination. many other women of the shelter who had been forced into prostitution suffered abuse for years after returning to nepal. to help heal their wounds psychological counselling is offered at the shelter. sessions are held once a week for as long as 18 months.
once residents at the shelter start showing signs of recovery, work begins on preparing them for their return to society. some of the women are illiterate and uneducated so shelter staff teach them essential skills such as reading, writing and simple a arithmetic. employment training is also provided, learning a craft such as needle work or weaving can help the women earn an income and eventually their independence. the training is provided by four staff members.
the womens work is displayed at the entrance of the store. each product is labeled with its creators name. when an item is sold it gives the residents a healing boost of confidence. sunita is a founder. she's making one of her regular weekly visits to the shelter. sunita makes a point of speaking to everyone individually. their faces light up when they meet her.
for a month after she was abducted she refused to prostitute so she was gang raped by her captors. sunita has been held captive for five months when indian police decided to launch a large scale crackdown. the raid led to the rescue of 127 women including sunita. the nepali government didn't immediately allow the women back
into the country. they were concerned about the possible spread of hiv. the women were eventually let back in but only on condition that they be tested for hiv and sheltered by an ngo. sunita approached an ngo run by a female doctor who campaigned against violence towards women. during her rehabilitation she learned for the first time about womens rights. sunita and her fellow victims went onto establish their own
ngo and called it shakti samuha. they faced many hurdles in the process and were met with ridicule and dismissal. sunita and her colleagues began sunita and her colleagues began their activism by visiting factories and other places where women worked. they warned them about the dangers of sex trafficking. they also met with police, calling on them to do more to fight the problem. in 2003, seven years after forming shakti samuha, sunita was able to establish the own group's shelter with the support of overseas and ngos. the nepali government later designated september 5th as
national day against human trafficking as a result of efforts by shakti samuha and other groups. the organizations stage a march on the day every year. more than half of shakti samuha's 62 staff members are survivors of sex trafficking. so far the organization has helped rehabilitate more than 500 women and return them to society. nowadays the parents of missing children are reaching out to the group pleading with them to help find their missing daughters. the organization receives more than 50 such requests every year. they copy letters and anything they receive and pass it onto police. they also alert other ngos in india to initiate a search.
the couple's son has already moved out and now only their daughter lives with them. >> i'm proud of my mother. she is fighting for the rights of girls and children. i like her. >> sunita is always busy and values every precious moment with her family. this day she is traveling to a city 40 kilometers south of kathmandu. shakti samuha has 11 branchs that provide aftercare for victims of sex trafficking. each branch has one permanent
staff member. therapy workshops are held on a permanent basis and anybody is free to drop in and take part. this session attracted 20 participants. some of the women here are victims of sex trafficking. others have suffered domestic violence. activities include theater as well. the cast are all victims of trafficking. they deliver their message
through simple performances like this. here they're rehearsing for a show they'll present the following day. the lead role is performed by phulmaya. she understands the evils of sex trafficking all too well having been forced into prostitution when she was a teenager. phulmaya is unable to read so the staff teaches her her lines. it's an emotional scene for phulmaya.
these performances not only highlight the point of cross border sex trafficking but the recent rise in domestic sex trafficking. more women are being lured to kathmandu to work in the sex traffic industry. sunita bangs on a drum to get things under way. in the story phulmaya's character lives together with her sick mother. she goes looks for work to help pay for her medicine.
return to society. sunita, herself, has been attended university for the past two years. she will major in social welfare and learn about the welfare systems in industrialized nations. she wants to incorporate those principles into the school she'll one day found. sunita and her team are dedicating their lives to fighting sex trafficking in nepal. their battle won't end until their battle won't end until every single woman is free. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com
. . . welcome to nhk world "newsline." i'm gene otani in tokyo. here is a look at some of the stories we are following this hour. indian prime minister narendra modi is heading for japan in hopes to build stronger ties to benefit the asian region. north korea has reversed its decision to send cheerleaders to next month's asian games in the south which had originally been seen as a gesture of friendship. raises awareness about a.l.s. a japaneuf