This Article is From Aug 01, 2018

Police Say "Rescued" Girls Stayed At Paharganj Hotel Willingly

The anti-trafficking operation started at 1 am and continued till 6 am in Delhi's Paharganj area.

This was the third such anti-trafficking operation since July 25 in Delhi.

New Delhi:

At least 39 Nepalese women were "rescued" from a hotel in Paharganj, the Delhi Commission For Women (DCW) claimed today.

The Delhi Police, however, said the women were staying in the hotel on their own volition, and they had come to Delhi in search of employment, leading to a war of words between the DCW and the force.

"From their medical examination, statements & enquiry conducted so far it has come out that they were staying in hotel on their own volition and they had come to Delhi in search of employment opportunity.They have not indicated any cognizable offense committed against them," Deputy Commissioner of Police (central) Mandeep Singh Randhawa tweeted.

According to the DCW, the anti-trafficking operation started at 1 am and continued till 6 am.

The women panel's chairperson, Swati Maliwal, took to Twitter to provide details about the operation.

"DCW received tip off and rescued 39 Nepali girls from Hotel Hriday Inn, Paharganj. Raid lasted the entire night and assistance was provided by Delhi Police. Entire hotel had only trafficked Nepali girls who were being sent to Gulf countries. Huge trafficking racket busted!," she said.

Mr Randhawa said police were informed around 12.15 am by the DCW helpline about some trafficked women staying at a hotel in Paharganj.

A team from the Paharganj police station went there but nothing suspicious was found. Around 1.45 am, Maliwal came there and told the police personnel that she had received information about another hotel.

"We give full support whenever there are issues related to women safety. She said there is a hotel where Nepali girls have been kept and our staff accompanied her there," the DCP said.

Some woman were found there and during investigation, it was found that they had Nepalese citizenship cards. The hotel register records were intact.

The women were sent for medical examination but some of them refused it.

Sixteen of the women agreed to the medical examination, police said, adding that their medical examination did not show any signs of assault.

 The DCW retaliated, saying the complaints of some of the women received during the raid last night by the DCW clearly reveal trafficking.

"Instead of registering an FIR on the basis of these complaints, SHO Paharganj has made a mockery of law. He has detained girls in police station entire day and even beyond sunset. Pressurised and instilled fear in them to not reveal anything. Till now, no arrest, no FIR and girls continue to be detained in PS," the DCW said.

Meanwhile, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal attacked Lt Governor Anil Baijal and the BJP for not taking any action in the matter.

"Complete breakdown of law and order in Delhi. Is it possible at such a large scale without collusion at the top? BJP, LG and Rajnath ji ought to respond. People of Delhi feeling very unsafe," he said in a tweet.

"Are police helping the accused for free? Till where the money is reaching? Why LG Sahab and BJP are not doing anything (in the matter)?" he tweeted in Hindi.

Mr Randhawa said further investigation is underway and statements of the women are being taken but no trafficking angle has emerged so far. Police are also contacting the Nepal Embassy.

Another police official, privy to the matter, said while some of the women had come in search of jobs, others were staying with relatives.

The women are being sent to the Nirmal Chhaya shelter home.

Ms Maliwal later claimed in another tweet that the women were being again taken to hospital for medical examination. They had undergone a medical examination this morning.

She urged Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to take cognisance of the matter.

The DCW claimed that this was the third such operation since July 25.

With the help of police, the DCW had rescued 16 women, who were allegedly trafficked from Nepal and were about to be taken to Gulf countries, from southwest Delhi's Munirka area on July 25.

 On July 30, the Delhi and Varanasi Police had rescued 18 women, including 16 from Nepal, from the clutches of an international prostitution racket in Vasant Vihar.