NEW DELHI: The home ministry on Friday wrote to the state governments and Union territory administrations to regularly hold anti-human trafficking conferences to sensitise their law enforcement agencies and other relevant departments and organisations regarding the role they can play in preventing and countering human trafficking.
It also wrote to the registrars of high courts asking them to ensure that judicial colloquiums are organised on a periodic basis to sensitise the judicial officers of the states and UTs on wide-ranging issues pertaining to trafficking in persons, assist magistrates and judges in taking appropriate decision while handling such cases and provide a nuanced understanding of the legal regime related to human trafficking.
MHA fill fund expenditure up to Rs 2 lakh for organising each of these state level conferences and judicial colloquiums. The states would be required to inform the MHA 15 days prior to the conference and also share the programme.
States and UTs, MHA suggested, may involve civil society organization in the conferences to make optimal use of the resources, knowledge and experience of such individuals and organizations in countering and combating the menace of trafficking.
The ministry stated that globalisation has increased the movement of people in search of better opportunities, exposing them to risk of trafficking and exploitation by unscrupulous elements in forms like labour, prostitution, forced marriage, domestic servitude, begging, organ trade, drug couriers, arms smuggling. “The complex nature of human trafficking calls for a multidimensional strategy in tackling it at domestic, regional and international level,” MHA said.
Impediments which the government has come across in the past, MHA stated, include lack of awareness, lack of training of concerned officers, failure to register cases under relevant laws and ineffective investigation etc. It emphasised that with regular exchange of information through designated focal points, sensitization of police officers, judicial officers, border guarding officials, partnership with civil society organizations, organizing capacity building programmes of concerned officials, monitoring activities of private placement agencies and travel agents etc. and by disseminating information to vulnerable sections of society, it may be possible to address the problem of trafficking to a large extent.