CASES AGAINST AJEET AND MANJU STILL ALIFE
Under the leadership of Sri Ajeet Singh president of GURIA, a well-known organization working for the upliftment of the women in prostitution and their families,volunteers of GURIA including students of Law Faculty and faculty social sciences rescued thirty seven trafficked minor poor and helpless girls at 7 p.m on 25/10/05from forced prostitution. This daring rescue operation in red light area of Shivdaspur under Police Station Manduadih was widely reported by local and National media which exalted not only the sensibility of the civilians of varanasi city but the civilians of whole nation. Ajeet Singh lodged a complaint at Manduadih Police Station and on the basis of this complaint Police Station Manduadih registered a First Information Report on 25.10.05 at 21.35 PM against Rahamat S/o Unknown, Smt. Tulsi W/o Unknown, Lallu S/o Unknown, Smt. Afjal w/o Rahmat under section 3,5,6 and 9 of PIT Act under crime no.274/2005. But afterwards it seems that just for the sake of their accountability and to save their image and hide their incompetence, Police of Manduhadih making a quick autocratic move baselessly registered eight FIRs against Ajeet Singh and his wife and others under section 394,354,342,427 of IPC under crime no. 274A/05, 274B/05, 274C/05, 274D/05, 274E/05, 274F/05, 274G/05, 274H/05.Making protest against this baseless case against Sri Ajeet Singh and his men, different social and political organizations organized Dharna, demonstration in favor of Ajeet Singh. Meanwhile Dr. Lenin of PVCHR took initiative in this respect by sending a complaint to SSP Varanasi and demanded that investigation should be carried out fairly and honestly. Further Dr. Lenin charged that the police of Manduadih Police Station had not registered the case against traffickers and brothel keepers under appropriate sections.
He demanded that sections like 342,368a,373 should be added against traffickers and brothel keepers. An application of this effect was also submitted in the court of concerning judicial magistrate of Varanasi. As a result investigation officer got the sections added during their investigation of the case and the traffickers were remanded under section 4, 8 of PTS Act along with 323,504,506,109,117,366a,373 of Indian Penal Code.
On 27.10.05 traffickers and brothel keepers were arrested and produced before concerning additional chief judicial magistrate of Varanasi and were sent to judicial custody.
On 31.10.05 a team of Human Rights Law Network sent a memorandum to principal secretary (Home) U.P. India. Through this memorandum it was demanded that the statement of 31 rescued girls should be taken under section 164 of IPC and their rehabilitation should be ensured immediately. Further demand was made to withdraw all false cases lodged aginst Ajeet singh and santwana manju.
GURIA, through it’s Counsel Sri Tanvir Ahmad Siddiqui Adv, Who is also coordinator of Human Rights Law Network, and his team comprising Abdul Sattar Adv., Aftab Ahmad Adv., Niyaj Ahmad Adv, Rajendra Prasad Srivastav Adv.,Mod Javed Akhtar Adv.,Gopal Krishna Adv. and Kanhaiya lal Patel Adv. vehemently opposed the bail applications of traffickers and brothel keepers and the same were dismissed by special judge SC/ST Act and special judge Anti corruption Act.
District Administration, having compelled by demonstrations and Dharnas organized by GURIA organization, pressure from Indian and international human rights groups and taking into account the seriousness of the situation, took steps against 21 traffickers and attached the property of few perpetrators and seized their bank accounts. Rahmat ,the main accused in Ajeet singh’s FIR has also been killed in a police encounter. But inorder to fill the gap GURIA has also requested the district magistrate to seize the property of the other accused from where girls were recovered in the rescue operation.
Once again 13-11-05 GURIA came to know that some girls had been brought by means of trafficking in Red Light Area of Shivdaspur. Immediately Ajeet Singh informed the concerning officers. Police along with Ajeet and Manju raided the area and rescued 6 more trafficked minor girls and case was registered against perpetrators in which Ajeet and manju were witnesses. Rescued girls went through medical inspection. One of the rescued girl stated that she was given some toxic material mixed up with tea and she fell unconscious. When she opened her eyes, she found herself in a Hotel and was forced to go through prostitution and when she refused to do so she was beaten badly. One of the girls told that she was a resident of Baraipur, Sialdah, West Bengal and she was taken to Mumbai. Then she was sold there out in the hands of one named Jani and Jani sold her to Rahmat. She was treated badly with cudgels.
A man named Mahtab told that sakina was his daughter and submitted an application with CWC Ram Nagar enclosing therewith family register and asserted that sakina @ Sangeeta was his daughter and she should be given under the guardianship of her mother Tulsi @ Maina Bano. GURIA organization opposed it vehemently in written. After hearing the pleadings of both parties CWC ordered for DNA test to ensure the paternity of Sakina. @ Sangeeta. GURIA conducted a massive struggle against traffickers and brothel keepers and as a result of this whole society has been mobilized against forced prostitution and people have gathered momentum to fight against the perpetrators. Another girl rescued after the operation gave her statement that brothel keepers used to beat her for not to trap the customers. She told that she was assaulted with her head before 15 days. She wished that she wanted to go back to her home.
One another girl stated that she was out of her home to bring water, then a man forcefully took her to Varanasi and he sold me here for Rs. 10,000/- she was beaten by brothel keepers often very badly. She wished that she wanted to go back to her grand mother.
Many other victim girls also told their stories of miseries.
In the course of our case it has come to the light that statements of the six minor girls rescued on the 13/11/05 was not taken by the police under section 164 CRPC- the benefit of which is being taken by the accused.
What has caused great concern among the activists and civil society is that the eight fake criminal cases against Ajeet singh and santwana manju have not yet been expunged by the police which will become a tool for harassment by the police and other powerful antisocial elements in the trafficking racket as days pass.On the other hand threat on the lives of Ajeet and santwana manju from criminals of the flesh trade is quite evident from the continued opposition by GURIA at all levels to ensure CONVICTION.
In a retaliatory move, after the rescue operation, varanasi police in the guise of operation “dry out” has cordoned off the area. This has led to virtual starvation and revictimisation of the women and children against the spirit of the ITP ACT 1956 .Therefore GURIA has been running a regular kitchen for almost three months for most of the women and children in the red light area of shivdaspur. Rather , as per the spirit of the ITP ACT the police should try to correctly implement the Act and arrest traffickers, brothel keepers, help end child prostitution, create exploitation free environment for the women who wish to continue in the absence of options and security to the children to avoid second generation prostitution.Under such circumstances about 115 women have requested Guria in writing to help them in this crisis.
The central advisory committee on child prostitution, under the chairmanship of secretary ,department of women and child development,H.R.D. Ministry, Govt. of India organized the above meeting on 1st dec 2005 in which N.H.R.C, N.C.W., Secretaries and police officers of Various State Governments, Addl. Diretor General of Police, U.P, secretary department of women and child development,govt. of UP, C.B.I., Guria’s President and others took part. The rescue operation of Guria was on the main Agenda.After the presentation by the state governmet of UP on the guria’s rescue operation the Committee unanimously pulled up the U.P Govt. for its inaction and supported the action of Guria along with the civil society. The committee very clearly spelled out that further revictimisation of the women should be avoided at any cost.
Lastly it is worth mentioning that no action has been initiated against policemen who were responsible for such a heinous crime in their jurisdiction.