Sex workers, including those from Nepal, Bangladesh and CIS countries, are not bad persons but forced into flesh trade by terrible poverty, the Supreme Court said on Tuesday while directing the states to frame schemes for their vocational training to lead a dignified life.
“A sex worker is obviously not surrendering her body to a man because she loves and respects him, but just for sheer survival,” a bench of Justices Markandey Katju and Gyan Sudha Misra said.
But the court was aware of the enormity of the task. “We are fully conscious of the fact that simply by our orders, the sex workers will not be rehabilitated immediately,” it said. It directed, “The states should not only come out with schemes indicating therein rehabilitation of the sex workers but they should also demonstrate their commitment to the cause by coming out with some concrete results, at least in phases.”
Quoting novels depicting sex workers as women of high character, it said, “If sex workers are given proper technical training, they will be able to come out of sex work and instead earn their livelihood through their technical skills instead of by selling their bodies. That will enable them to live a life of dignity.”
It asked the SC panel headed by senior advocate Pradip Ghosh to provide by August 24 a list of sex workers who were living under dire circumstances and were willing for rehabilitation. To begin with, the panel was asked to focus on the four metros first.
The court wanted to involve the youth in helping the panel draft measures for rehabilitation of sex workers and created a new e-mail ID – panelonsexworkers @ gmail.com – to receive inputs from the public. The bench said, “We are informed that some NGOs have a list of numbers and localities of such sex workers who are immediately willing for rehabilitation and want to get out of the flesh trade.”
However, it complained about lack of funds from the Centre for undertaking meaningful work. The court asked additional solicitor general P P Malhotra to find funds and permanent office space for the panel to meet and discuss rehabilitation strategies.
It is the request of public, that Supreme Court must instruct, Central Government to seize the several crores of scam money from politicians and utilize them for the welfare measures of People and to give rehabilitation to Sex workers by arranging sufficient technical training for them to have their lively hood in a dignified way.