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Rajasthan Horror: Girls Auctioned, Mothers Raped | UnBreak the News with Prema Sridevi | Ep: 101

In Rajasthan’s villages in Bhilwara, it has been reported that young girls are being sold on stamp paper, and if the abominable practice is objected to, then the girls’ mothers are subjected to rape. Here’s the latest episode of UnBreak the News with Prema Sridevi!

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In Rajasthan’s villages in Bhilwara, it has been reported that young girls are being sold on stamp paper, and if the abominable practice is objected to, then the girls’ mothers are subjected to rape. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has taken cognisance of this case and has issued notices to the government of Rajasthan. The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) conducted a ground report and found that 46 girls were missing in villages in Bhilwara and suspected that perhaps the girls were trafficked. These numbers could just be the tip of the iceberg. Prema Sridevi UnBreaks this News for You!

(Produced below are the abridged version of the transcripts of the video explainer from Episode: 101 | UnBreak the News with Prema Sridevi | Title: Rajasthan Horror: Girls Auctioned, Mothers Raped)

In Rajasthan’s villages in Bhilwara, it has been reported that young girls are being sold on stamp paper, and if the abominable practice is objected to, then the girls’ mothers are subjected to rape. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has taken cognisance of this case and has issued notices to the government of Rajasthan. The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) conducted a ground report and found that 46 girls were missing in villages in Bhilwara and suspected that perhaps the girls were trafficked. These numbers could just be the tip of the iceberg. Let’s UnBreak this News!

Last month on October 27, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) issued notices to the Rajasthan government on the reported auctioning of girls on stamp papers and the refusal thereof, resulting in the rape of their mothers. According to the NHRC, this was probably done to settle disputes on the diktats of caste Panchayats in Rajasthan. This practice continued in half a dozen districts of Rajasthan.

NHRC said in a statement: “Whenever there is a dispute between two parties, particularly involving financial transactions and loans, the girls aged between 8 to 18 are auctioned to recover money. The girls are being sent to UP, MP, Mumbai, Delhi and even foreign countries and subjected to physical abuse, torture, and sexual assault in slavery. The media reports have documented the ordeals of many victims of such horrendous crimes.”

The NHRC also issued a notice to the DGP of Rajasthan and has asked the state Chief Secretary and DGP to respond within four weeks. The Commission then sent its representative Umesh Kumar to visit the affected villages and submit a comprehensive report within three months.

“Reportedly, in Bhilwara, whenever there is any dispute between the two parties, instead of going to the police, they approach the caste Panchayats for its settlement. It becomes the starting point of making the girls slave, and if they are not sold, their mothers are ordered to be raped,” the NHRC noted.

The Commission further acknowledged a news report which said, “In order to pay off a 15 lakh rupees debt, a caste Panchayat forced a man to sell his sister first and even after this when the debt was not cleared, he was forced to sell his 12-year-old daughter. The buyer purchased the girl for Rs. 8 lakhs. Thereafter, all five sisters became slaves, but still, their father could not pay off his debt. In another incident, a man was forced to sell his house and further take a loan of Rs. 6 lakhs for the treatment of his wife, who later died. He took Rs. 6 lakhs more for the treatment of his mother. In order to settle the loan, he sold his young daughter for Rs. 6 lakhs to some people who took her to Agra. She was sold three times and became pregnant four times.”

Soon politicians from the BJP and Congress took up this issue, and a political blame game ensued. The State Chief Minister was heard saying these things had happened when BJP was ruling the state as well. What did they do to put an end to it? The BJP, on the other hand, continued to play politics over the issue. But lost in the political blame game were the individual stories of slavery and horror that young girls were subjected to.

Speaking to a regional Rajasthan TV channel, a victim recounted her horror: “They were talking about brokerage. They finalised the deal for two lakh rupees, took a one lakh advance, and then brought me back to the village and locked me in that house.”

The sarpanch of Bhilwara village was also seen admitting before the TV channel, “They don’t have a source of income. So, they are forced to sell their land or daughters when the loans increase. The agents who lend them money constantly call them and threaten them for repayment of the loan. So, these poor families have no other option but to sell their lands or their daughters”.

The NCW has sent a fact-finding team headed by an Under Secretary to Bhilwara to probe the matter. The NCPCR investigated the matter and found that nearly 46 girls were missing in villages in Bhilwara. The girls were alleged victims of trafficking. The NCPCR team found that out of the 46 missing girls, around 20 to 25 girls were married between the ages of 12 and 15. But these instances are not just limited to Rajasthan.

Article 14, a digital news media outlet reported: "A 15-year-old from Bihar’s Gaya was lured more than 1,000 km to Patna and sold for Rs 250,000 to a man who married her in Baran in Rajasthan. The girl was forcibly taken back from him to be resold at a higher price. Her rescue and the arrest of some of her traffickers throw light on the continuing abuse and exploitation of women, and minor girls from impoverished eastern states trafficked to fill the gap in states with a skewed sex ratio."

No one really knows the extent of this horrendous practice and it remains undocumented. The girls are victims of their circumstances and an uncaring administration. The governments have institutionalised this practice in their respective states through their indifference and numerous minor girls and young women continue to suffer in silence in various parts of the country at the hands of such caste Panchayats and middlemen.