Escape for Freedom in India

Post a Comment » Written on August 4th, 2014     
Filed under: Community Development
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CSW PuneM comes from a small village in Karnataka, India.  Her family believed in Devdasi tradition (these days it is considered as temple prostitution and prohibited by law).  Her parents were so poor that they worked as labourers.  But both of them died in a road accident, when M was just ten years of age.  This brought lots of struggles for M and her two siblings.

Few years later, one of her cousin sisters who lived in Pune came to the village.  She asked M, if she would be willing to come with her to Pune and to take care of her baby.  She also promised that she would give some money for the work she would do.  M considered it as a good opportunity and came to Pune along with her cousin.

M stayed with her sister at Budhwar Peth for almost six months.  She also started to realize what all was taking place in Budhwar Peth.    On one evening as M was sleeping at the veranda, police raided the area and arrested her along with other women, considering her as one of the prostitutes too.  They were taken to the police station that night.  On realizing that she was not a prostitute, two of the police officers forcefully took her to one of the hotel nearby and raped her.  She was helpless to resist their intention.  The next day they left her at Budhwar Peth.   She shared her plight with her cousin.  But that day she was shocked to know that her cousin sister too was living all these days in Budhwar Peth as a commercial sex worker.   For almost two weeks she continued to struggle with questions about her life and at last decided to stay back and continue the profession of commercial sex work.

Years passed by and she continued to have no hope in life.  By chance she came in contact with one of the Hindustani Covenant Church (HCC) staff, who listened to her plights and tried to provide her counseling and showed some hopes in life.  Few months of regular contacts and counseling was a strength and encouragement for her to leave this work.  Considering her willingness for an alternative, HCC paid the ransom money for her release.  HCC and CWR have given her a micro-loan amount to start a business of her own.  She thinks she will be able to run a tea stall for an income.

153643219.SFsSaOWf.DSC00621M now lives at the Home of Hope, a residential facility where M can receive counseling, job-skill training, and escape the life of a CSW. Give now to support other women like M.




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