The issue of human trafficking is a matter of great concern to the society: Kyrmen

Shillong, July 10: The Meghalaya State Commission for Women in collaboration with the Department of Social Welfare, Government of Meghalaya and the International Justice Mission, Kolkata today organised a One Day State Level Consultation on Human Trafficking of Women and Girls in Meghalaya at Yojana Bhawan Auditorium, Meghalaya Main Secretariat, Shillong.

The Inaugural Session of the programme was attended by Meghalaya Minister for Social Welfare, Shri Kyrmen Shylla as Chief Guest in the presence of Chairperson, Meghalaya State Commission for Women, Smt Theilin Phanbuh, Chairperson, State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, Smt Meena Kharkongor, Commissioner& Secretary, Social Welfare Department, Shri T. Dkhar, officials of different government departments, NGOs, teachers, students and others.

The Minister, during his address said that human trafficking results in victims facing mental and physical disorders such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, depression and anxiety while also stating that women victims are at higher risk of diseases such as HIV AIDS, Tuberculosis, etc

The minister also said that the lack of employment opportunities in the formal sector leads individuals towards seeking employment in the informal sector where withholding of wages, debt bondage and various forms of physical and sexual abuse at the work place are common. He further added that the issue of human trafficking is a matter of great concern to the society where women, especially the economically disadvantaged and marginalised groups face an increased risk of exploitation.

On occasion, the minister also sought the active involvement of all stakeholders including parents, teachers, NGOs, the police, etc calling upon them to be ever vigilant in order to ensure that the heinous crime of human trafficking is tackled more effectively.

During the programme, a documentary film entitled “In the Shadows- Voices of victims of Human Trafficking” filmed by the Department of Social Work, Women’s College, Shillong and produced by the Meghalaya State Commission for Women was released by the Chief Guest.

The inaugural function was followed by a technical session on the topics, ‘Global and National insights on Human Trafficking’ and ‘Role of Police in Human Trafficking’ where Shri Saji Philip, Director of Operations, International Justice Mission, Kolkata and Shri Lakador Syiem, Superintendent of Police, West Jaintia Hills District were the resource persons.

During the daylong programme, a panel discussion on the topic ‘How to prevent and tackle the problem of Human Trafficking’ was also held with Chairperson, State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, Smt Meena Kharkongor, Member Secretary, Meghalaya State Legal Services Authority, Shri N.A Khan, Director of Justice Solutions, International Justice Missions, Kolkata, Shri Saptarshi Biswas and Additional Director General of Police Training And Placement, Law& Order, etc, Shri H. Nongpluh as panellists. The discussion was moderated by The Shillong Times Editor, Smt Patricia Mukhim.


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