Human Trafficking in Pakistan

(Sehar Ashraf, )

In today’s world, one might think that slavery is a thing of the past, but truth be told, history has a way of repeating itself. It comes as no surprise that where there is good, there is bad. Where there are good people, there are bad people taking advantage of them. Slavery has many forms, one of them is human trafficking.

Now, what is meant by human trafficking? “The United Nations defines human trafficking as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of persons by improper means (such as force, abduction, fraud, or coercion) for an improper purpose including forced labor or sexual exploitation.” (“Overview of Human Trafficking”, 2019). Unfortunately, it is a child’s play for traffickers to prey on people who are hoping for a better future and trapping them into this cruel business through false promises of good employment, financial stability, good education, or romantic relationship, etc. In some of the worst cases, poor families sell their own children to traffickers for money.

In Pakistan, countless men and women become victims of human trafficking every year whether it be by means of abduction, force, or fraud. According to an article, “In 2012, 823 victims of human trafficking in Pakistan sought help in shelters.” (“Five Facts About Human Trafficking in Pakistan”, 2019). One of the most recent cases of human trafficking in Pakistan includes the smuggling of women to China for prostitution. The scheme of this illegal act was that Pakistani women were deceived into marrying Chinese men, and once they were in China, they were forced into prostitution. One of the victims of this inhuman business, Sumaira, tells the Associated Press in Gujranwala how she was raped repeatedly by Chinese men at a house in Islamabad where she was kept after her brothers arranged her marriage to an older Chinese man, for which her brothers were paid money. Fortunately, many Chinese men were arrested in a raid by Pakistan's Federal Investigation Agency. Also, a few women/victims were rescued during the operation. When Chinese authorities found out about the trafficking, they also successfully rescued many Pakistani women that were trafficked into China. Boys and girls also bought, sold , rented or kidnapped to work in organized, illegal begging rings, prostution and in agriculture bounded labour .Illegal labour agents charge high fees to parents with false promise of decent work for their children , who are later exploited and subject to force labour in domestic servituade, unskilled labour, small shops and other sectors..

Before 2018, there were no laws regarding trafficking, but all thanks to UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime) for making efforts to enact laws regarding this issue. In 2018 Trafficking in Persons Report, Pakistan was upgraded to Tier 2 from Tier 3 which means that although Pakistan does not yet fully meet the minimum standards for eliminating trafficking, it is making efforts to come to that point. (“Five Facts About Human Trafficking in Pakistan”, 2019).

In conclusion, human trafficking is one of the major issues of Pakistan which should be taken care of. Government authorities should implement ways to control human trafficking in our beloved country. Support groups, strict laws, and security are some of the things our Government officials should focus on. Being citizens of Pakistan, we also have some responsibilities such as raising awareness about human trafficking, assisting victims of human trafficking, and establishing an independent anti-slavery organization.


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27 Sep, 2019 Views: 261


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