SC Panel: Law enforcement Agencies should not interfere with Sex Workers ‘participating with Consent’

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New Delhi: Prostitutes who are participating with consent must not be required to face criminal actions or even the interference from the police authorities, as said by the honourable Supreme Court of India’s instated panel.

The panel by the honourable Apex Court was fixed for protecting the Rights of Sex workers and also for ensuring them better conditions of work. This panel was instituted by the Apex Court in the year 2011 and it is now expected that this Panel will be submitting the report on the concerned issue in the next month.

It is notable that in the present situation, the prostitution is not made illegal by the specific laws in India, however, the existing laws are allowing and requiring the Police officials to take actions against the profession.

Considering the various hidden facts, even what related to their livelihood, the panel said that the running of the brothel is unlawful and the women who are working as Sex workers with their willingness should not be arrested or penalized or even harassed or victimized, while there being a raid on brothel. This situation is made clear, by adding that the ‘voluntary sex work is not illegal in the country.

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It is also sought to mention by the panel that the provisions contemplated under Section 8 of the ITPA- Immoral Traffic Prevention Act of 1956 is seems misused by the Law enforcement agencies. And as such the panel has recommended the deletion of the offence of Soliciting, which is found mentioned in the said provision. Further it is notable that the said provisions is punishing the solicit or seduction acts by the sex workers and the punishment is extended in the law to imprisonment up to 6 month and also with the fine which may be 500 rupees.

As such, the said panel which is headed by Pradip Ghosh, the Senior Advocate, would surely have targeted this provision and also they are expected to submit their recommended measures for rehabilitation of the sex workers.

Thus, now the country is having about 1.2 million prostitutes and many of them have been forced to entre in this profession/ trade as the consequent of poverty.

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Adv. Faim Khalilkhan Pathan