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Koena is Tricked into being Re-trafficked

Our social worker reassures Koena as she shares her story

We rescued 17-year-old Koena from Nagpur on January 17, 2023. She was a minor and from a poor family, so she was placed in a shelter home for a few months before the court released her back to her mother. 

Since her rescue, our social workers have regularly visited Koena at her home in Nagpur; she seemed happy and keen to pursue cosmetology. 

But a few weeks ago, we received a call from Koena asking our team to visit her. She said it was urgent. When our team arrived at her house, it was evident that something was bothering Koena, but she was hesitant to share. After urging her to confide in us, Koena shared her story.

Koena said that a few weeks ago, a neighbor named Sana started visiting Koena at her home. Sana was one of the people who initially enticed Koena into prostitution, and Sana wanted Koena to start working as a prostitute again. Koena refused. Sana kept harassing her. 

Koena had been looking for jobs in her neighborhood. A woman named Rinky approached Koena and told her about a catering job in Aurangabad (a city approximately 280 miles from Nagpur). Eager to start a professional job, Koena left with Rinky for Aurangabad. But when Koena arrived, there was no catering job. Rinky wanted to profit from Koena working as a prostitute. When Koena refused, she was beaten up. Rinky forced Koena to drink large amounts of alcohol so that Koena was intoxicated and unable to fight away customers. 

After a few days, Koena was sold to a brothel in Madhya Pradesh. Feeling desperate and dejected, Koena attempted to commit suicide. A boy saw her through a window and immediately informed his mother, who called the police. News of Koena’s suicide attempt reached her family in Nagpur, and a relative traveled to Madhya Pradesh and brought her back home. 

(At this point, we asked Koena why she did not tell her mother what happened to her.) Koena shared that she did not want to add to her mother’s anxieties. Koena lost her father a few years ago due to AIDS, and her mother is HIV+. Koena then continued her story. 

A few weeks after returning home, Koena discovered that she was pregnant, and this is when Sana started visiting Koena at her house, threatening to kill her and her family if Koena refused to return to prostitution.

Koena was tired, weary, and very angry, and that is when she called us. Koena asked us to help her file a complaint against Sana. Our social workers accompanied her to the police station, and we also met with the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Assistant Commissioner of Police, and the Child Welfare Committee to brief them about Koena’s case.

On March 16, the police filed a First Information Report, and on March 18, Koena gave her 164 statement before the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) in Nagpur (this statement outlines the crimes she endured and names her offenders). The CWC passed an order for Koena to be placed in a shelter home and appointed our team as Koena’s support. The police are investigating the matter, and we hope they will arrest everyone involved in sexually exploiting Koena.

Koena (left) and our social worker


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