Amid nationwide lockdown in the wake of coronavirus, the sex workers in Sonagachi, a red-light area in North Kolkata, are facing a huge financial crisis with many of them not being able to feed their families.
West Bengal Women and Child Development Minister Shashi Panja visited the area on Monday to create awareness on COVID-19 among the sex workers and distributed face masks and ration.
"Today I am at the Sonagachi red light area in North Kolkata in my constituency. We are trying to reach out to almost 1,500 sex workers, who are in distress due to the lockdown. We are giving them dry ration today, which includes rice, pulses and potato," Ms Panja told ANI.
"Tomorrow (Tuesday), we will be serving them cooked meal. Along with this, we are explaining to them the prevailing situation and how we must be careful. We are also giving them masks to use. They are also being made aware of using sanitiser before taking the ration," she added.
Meanwhile, the Secretary of Durbar Committee (sex worker committee), Kajal Bose said, "Due to the lockdown and coronavirus scare, clients have stopped visiting Sonagachi. We are facing acute crisis as we are totally dependent on clients. We are just hoping and waiting for things to get normal."