SC: 'Earn livelihood instead of selling body'

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New Delhi, Feb 15: The Apex Court showed its sensitivity to the cause of sex workers, who have been forced into the flesh trade due to poor economic conditions. The Supreme Court said, “A woman is compelled to indulge in prostitution not for pleasure but because of abject poverty. If such a woman is granted opportunity to avail some technical or vocational training, she would be able to earn her livelihood by such vocational training and skill instead of selling her body."

A bench comprising Justices Markandey Katju and Gyan Sudha Misra heard a case related to the murder of a sex worker and were exploring ways to rehabilitate them into the Indian system without facing prejudices of any sort.

The judges' bench suggested that sex workers be given vocational training to wean them off the flourishing flesh trade in India. The SC added, “We direct the central and the state governments to prepare schemes for giving technical and vocational training to sex workers and sexually abused women in all cities in India."

There are around  6,88,751 registered sex workers in the country and the National Aids Control Organisation (Naco) estimates the actual figures to be around 12.63 lakh. The highest number of sex workers are from AP (one lakh), followed by Karnataka (79,000) and Delhi (37,900).

The Apex body also clarified that the goods produced by the sex workers would also find a good market. The Supreme Court said, "If technical training is for some craft like sewing garments, then some arrangement should also be made for providing a market for such garments, otherwise they will remain unsold and unused, and consequently the woman will not be able to feed herself."

OneIndia News

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