Prostitution is a term that is of a dubious nature in India. People may oppose to it vehemently, but a world of narrow alleys and shady rooms still exist in many corners of the country. Illegal in principle and flourishing in practice, prostitution has become a thriving profession. The hard-to-digest fact about the trade is the way minor girls find themselves lured in its quagmires, often unwillingly. Many girls from nearby countries, like Nepal, are trafficked to India and end up as sex workers. Quite ironically, brothels are not constricted to smaller cities, but are equally rampant in the various metropolitan areas of the country. Notorious red light districts of India include GB Road in Delhi, Sonagachi in Kolkata, Kamathipura in Mumbai, Budhwar Peth in Pune and Reshampura in Gwalior.
Is Prostitution Legal?
The various laws pertaining to flesh trade and prostitution are of an ambiguous nature. According to The Immoral Traffic (Suppression) Act (SITA) of 1956, prostitution is neither legal nor illegal. Until a sex worker does not publicly implore customers, but practices it voluntarily and in private; prostitution is deemed legal. However, once she expands her operations and is joined by other sex workers, the premises used for the trade becomes a brothel. Prostitution, in such cases, becomes illegal. Moreover, law prevents a sex worker to carry on prostitution within a distance of 200 yards from any public place. Today, the SITA has been amended to form The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act or PITA in India.
In the business whether due to will or worry, every sex worker has her own tale to tell. Listed below are some major points why girls turn to become sex workers in India.
- Lack of financial resources to support oneself or family
- Dissolution of marriage or death of husband
- Rejected by families
- Mother is a sex worker
- Any relative from the same profession
- Lured by prospects and pleasures
- College goers with a fancy for extravagant life
- Duped by friends and guardians as pimps
- Sold by lovers and husbands
Whether foul play or fair justice, prostitution transcends all form of defined perception and verdict in India.