Imphal: Twenty Nepalese women, who were suspected victims of trafficking, and another woman who was mentally ill left Imphal on Sunday in a bus for their hometown in Nepal.
They were associated with security personnel and representatives of Nepalese Embassy.
They have been handed over to Prakash Adhikari, Counselor, Embassy of Nepal by the state government authority after completing due procedures for repatriation back to their homes in Nepal.
All these women were rescued in the month of November and December in 2019, social welfare director Ngangom Uttam Singh said.
Most of these women came to Manipur in small groups both by air and through land routes in four batches. Eight of them were detained by the Airport Authorities at Imphal International Airport on suspicion due to lack of proper documents while the remaining 12 were apprehended at the international border at Moreh by a team of Moreh Police, 43 Assam rifles and ICP officials. They were all reportedly bound to travel to Gulf countries like Kuwait, Dubai etc via Myanmar, he added.
All the 20 suspected victims of trafficking were provided shelter and other support services in three Ujjawala Homes in Kakching and Chandel, run under the department of social welfare. The department actively monitored in their provision of shelter and other support services like medical aid, counselling and vocational training during their stay in Manipur for the last eight months, the director said.
On December 7 last year, the mentally ill Nepalese woman was found loitering in the paddy field at Choithar village in Ukhrul and was rescued by the Ukhrul Police and kept in Swadhar Home (UNICAM) in Ukrul district, run under the social welfare department. Proper medical and psychological treatment was provided during her stay, he added.
Six officials; four from the home department and two from Ujjawalla Homes, run under the department, have been deputed for the journey till Kakadvitta – Panitanki Border (Darjeeling, West Bengal) by bus.
This is the 2nd batch of Nepalese women who have been rescued and repatriated back to Nepal.
Earlier, 179 Nepalese citizens including 32 men were rescued in Manipur and repatriated back to Nepal in February, 2019. Such rescue of victims of trafficking in person, providing them shelter and support services and finally repatriating them to their respective hometown is possible only because of the collective efforts of the law enforcing agencies, NGOS, home department, ministry of external Affairs, Nepalese Embassy and social welfare department.
All concerned are requested to remain alert so that precious lives can be saved from the clutches of human traffickers. In case of women related issues and any suspicious activities relating to women trafficking, Women Helpline- 181 or the nearest Police Station should be informed immediately, the director said.