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She saves girls from human trafficking


Ruchira Gupta, Founder and President of ‘Apne Aap’

Human trafficking, which remains world’s third largest illegal activity after smuggling of drugs and weapons, is the worst example of one person’s crime against other human being.

Not many have the courage to raise voice against such a heinous crime, but Ruchira Gupta, founder and president of ‘Apne Aap’, has proved that if you have the will, God shows the way. Recently she was honoured by the United Nation Association's New York Chapter at the "Spring Luncheon" in New York City.

In a 23 years career Gupta has worked as a journalist, activist and policy-maker on issues related to violence against women and children. She has won an
Emmy for “outstanding investigative journalism” and then founded ‘Apne Aap’.

The organization of over 5,000 women and children trafficked and trapped in or at risk to prostitution in India’s red-light areas and slums and has provided policy support to the Government of India, UN agencies in Nepal, Thailand, Kosovo and New York and USAID in Washington DC, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Thailand and Phillippines.

Ruchira’s efforts enabled the victims of sex trade and trafficking get legal, education and livelihood training and skills that help these women resist traffickers. So far, Apne Aap has formed 146 groups and put 814 daughters of women in prostitution in schools.

Ruchira along with effort of other volunteers has earned international recognition and is an example for many to work for eradication of evils like sex trade and trafficking not only from a nation particular, but whole world.

Ruchira shares a dream with victims and survivors of sex trafficking, that one day they too will lead a normal and happy life. She believes in a world where buying and selling another human being is unacceptable. She challenges the notion that slavery and prostitution are inevitable. She dreams of an economy that forces no one to sell oneself.

Write to d-sector  |  Editor's Note

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Monday, January 03, 2011

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Activists and politicians join hands for women's MP quota
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 Other Articles in Socio-Economic Development
Corruption Watch

The bad news is that corruption has not only sustained but has grown in size and stature in the country. With scams being a regular feature, seventy per cent respondents in a survey have rightfully opined that corruption has continued to increase in India. One in every two interviewed admit having paid a bribe for availing public services during last one year. Transparency International's latest survey reveals that the political parties top the chart for the most corrupt public institutions, followed by police force and legislatures. No wonder, India continues to make new records on the global corruption arena!

The shocking revelation is that the health and education sectors haven't remained untouched by this phenomenon. With 5th and 6th positions respectively for these sectors on the public perception chart on corruption, corruption has crept insidiously into these sectors of hope for the masses. With bureaucracy being fourth in the list of corrupt institutions in the country, corruption seems to have been non-formally institutionalized with little hope if public services would ever be effective in the country. With economic growth having literally institutionalized corruption, are we now expecting corrupt to be socially responsible - a different CSR.

Poor. Who?

Not giving 'aid' to India is one thing but calling it 'rich' is quite another. If one in three of the world's malnourished children live in India, what does average daily income of $3 indicate? It perhaps means that there is a relative decline in poverty - people are 'less poor' than what they used to be in the past. But having crossed the World Bank arbitrary threshold of $2 a day does not absolve the 'developed' countries of their obligation to part with 0.7 per cent of their Gross National Income in development aid. Should this three-decade old figure not be revised?  

An interesting debate in UK's House of Commons delved on future of development assistance by the British Government. While prioritizing limited resources has been a concern, there has been no denying the fact that development aid must be guided towards tangible gains over a short period of time to start with. There are difficult choices for elected governments to make - should they invest in long-term primary education or in short-term university scholarships? Which of these will bring gains and trigger long-term transformation in the society. As politicians continue to be divided on the matter, poverty persists!!   

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