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11-year-old Indian schoolgirl forced into domestic servitude escapes, says she was sold

The figures show a 25 percent increase in cases of human trafficking in India in 2015, with 43 percent of the 9,127 victims below the age of 18

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CHENNAI, India, September 28, 2016: An 11-year-old girl who escaped from a middle-class home where she was forced to work as a domestic help in southern India told investigators on Monday that she had been pulled out of school and sold for $15 by her family.

After she escaped from a house in Tambaram near the port city of Chennai on Sunday morning, the girl told child welfare committee officials that she was made to work in two homes round the clock, given very little to eat and was not paid or allowed to continue her schooling.

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“She scaled the wall at around four in the morning on Sunday and asked an auto-rickshaw driver for help,” said Zaheeruddin Mohamed, the member of the local child welfare committee.

“She is now in a government children’s home. A preliminary investigation indicates she was exploited, underfed and not allowed to leave.”

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Crime data released by the Indian government in August showed more than 40 percent of human trafficking cases in 2015 involved children being bought, sold and exploited as modern day slaves.

The figures showed a 25 percent increase in cases of human trafficking in India in 2015, with 43 percent of the 9,127 victims below the age of 18.

The crimes included inducing a young girl with the intent of sexual intercourse, buying or selling a girl for prostitution, and keeping a child as a slave.

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In her statement to the committee, the 11-year-old said she was living with her grandparents in their village in Tamil Nadu state’s Thiruvarur, nearly 300 km (190 miles) from where she was brought to work, and studying in grade seven. Her parents had abandoned her.

“The girl has told us that she was sold to an acquaintance of her mother, who made her work as a maid in his house and in his in-laws home,” Mohamed told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

The man who “bought” the girl runs a travel agency and registered the child as missing after she escaped.

The committee said they would file an official complaint against him with the police and he would be charged with trafficking based on the girl’s statement.

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“The girl shudders at the mention of her trafficker and when she was brought to us, she was very, very frightened,” said Mohamed.

According to her recorded statement, she was sold for just 1,000 rupees ($15). (Reuters)

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People Have Faith in Modi Government to Handle COVID-19 Crisis

Over 83% trust Modi govt will handle COVID-19 crisis well

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Modi government
The Narendra Modi-led central government is leaving no stone unturned in fight against the novel coronavirus pandemic. Wikimedia Commons

As the Narendra Modi-led central government is leaving no stone unturned in fight against the novel coronavirus pandemic, 83.5 per cent people from various states “trust in government” in handling the crisis.

The findings came out in the IANS-CVoter exclusive tracker on COVID-19 Wave 2 survey conducted during last seven days among 18 plus adults nationwide. The findings and projections are based on Computer-Assisted Telephone Interviewing (CATI).

Replying to a question “I think Indian government is handling the coronavirus well”, 83.5 per cent people agreed that they trust in government’s steps being taken in fight against the deadly disease, and 9.4 per cent expressed their disagreement. The survey was conducted on March 26 and 27. Of the 83.5 per cent who showed their trust in government, 66.4 per cent strongly agree with the opinion and 17.1 agree with the view.

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A similar survey on the same question done on March 17 and 18 showed that 83.6 per cent people expressed their trust in government in fight against the pandemic which so far has claimed 29 lives and over 1,000 conformed cases. A total of 13.7 per cent people expressed their disagreement.

Modi government
83.5 per cent people from various states trust the Modi government in handling the COVID-19 crisis. Wikimedia Commons

As per the tracker, the data is weighted to the known demographic profile of the states. Sometimes the table figures do not sum to 100 due to the effects of rounding, it says. “Our final data file has socio-economic profile within plus 1 per cent of the demographic profile of the state. We believe this will give the closest possible trends.”

The Tracking Pol fieldwork covers random probability samples during the last seven days from the release date and that the sample spread is across all assembly segments across all states. This survey covers all states in India and was conducted in 10 languages as part of our routine OmniBus, it says.

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“This is a thorough random probability sample; and we are ensuring a proper representative analysis by statistical weighing of the data to make it representative of the local population as per the latest census and or other available demographic benchmarks.”

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The data clarified that it strictly follows the WAPOR code of conduct (World Association of Public Opinion Research) for our ethical and transparent scientific practices and have incorporated the PCI (Press Council of India ) guidelines as our SOP (Standard Operating Procedures). (IANS)