Imphal, Sep 10 (IANS): The Indian Embassy in Yangon with the help of Myanmar police has rescued eight Manipuri tribal girls who were to be taken to Thailand and Singapore by some international human traffickers, an official said.
S. Suresh Babu, Additional Chief Secretary, Manipur in a statement said that the Indian government swung into action following an SOS to Manipur police from the eight girls who were lodged in a hotel near the central railway station, Yangon, before being taken away to Thailand and Singapore for flesh trade.
With this, the number of tribal girls rescued from the clutches of the sex traders in the past few weeks has increased to 15.
Some local members of the international gang, all hailing from Churachandpur district of Manipur, were arrested.
Suresh Babu said: "The eight girls from Churachandpur district were taken to Myanmar via Moreh, the border town. The girls managed to ring up the police in the district appealing to rescue them."
The Manipur government got in touch with the central government which in turn instructed the Indian Embassy to do the needful. With the help of the Myanmarese police the Embassy officials raided the hotel. The girls are now in the protective custody of police. Arrangements are being made to bring them back to Manipur.
Police in Manipur disclosed on Sunday that two persons have been arrested in connection with the trafficking of these girls.
A case has been registered in the women police station in Churachandpur district.
In a related incident, Churachandpur police laid multiple traps along the highway on September 2 night to rescue two girls and arrested three traffickers including two women.
One of the girls told IANS that her parents were paid Rs 10,000 with a vague assurance to be paid Rs 90,000 later. The traffickers had told the unlettered parents that she would be given gainful employment in foreign countries.
Five more girls were rescued on Wednesday while they were being taken to Moreh on way to Thailand.
Some years back three tribal girls from Manipur managed to return home with money donated by generous tourists. They said that many other girls are forced into immoral trafficking there. They said that first several boys and girls are taken to Chennai from where selected girls are taken to Thailand and Singapore. On the way their passports are confiscated. They were forced into drudgery as domestic servants and no money was paid to them for 10 hour work daily.
The social welfare department, Manipur issued an advisory to the people not to be duped by the traffickers who promise education and jobs to their daughters. They were advised to cross check before sending their children away to foreign countries.