13 year old rescued!
On December 13th, we received a lead about a minor girl who was being forced into prostitution in a lodge at a crowded market in West Bengal. Wanting to rescue her as soon as possible, we gathered information about her situation and presented it at the police station the next day. Our team was instructed to return two weeks later.
Two weeks felt far too long to delay a rescue when we knew there was a young girl experiencing abuse! So the next day we returned to the police station and we were able to plan a rescue for December 21st, one week later. Although we wanted to conduct the rescue immediately, our team used the waiting to continue discussing various rescue strategies. On December 21st, we were ready.
At 12:20 pm we learned that the victim was at the lodge with the pimp, who was also responsible for trafficking her. At 1 pm, the police raided the lodge and together we rescued Naureen, 13 years old, and Rasi, 24 years old. The police arrested two people from the lodge and collected liquor bottles, condoms, the customer log and other records as evidence.
The accused were placed in custody, and after medical testing, Naureen and Rasi were moved into a shelter home for their protection. Later that evening, the police arrested the owner of the lodge from his house.
The next morning, Naureen and Rasi went to court to share their 164 statements (a voluntary statement in which the victim shares her experience and names of the accused). Rasi, a major, gave her statement in a courtroom, and Naureen shared her statement in front of a judge, a special provision for minors.
Our team will continue to offer support to Naureen and Rasi as they heal physically and emotionally.