A minor girl from the endangered Paharia tribe of Jharkhand, who was forced to work as a domestic help in Sushant Lok PhaseI here, was rescued during a joint operation conducted by NGO Shakti Vahini and Haryana Police. The 17yearold girl, who was not allowed by her employers to step out of the ‘C’Block residence, managed to escape on the morning of August 15. She later ran into a person who called up the Childline India Foundation — a helpline for children. She had been brought to Gurgaon in November last year. During counselling, the girl revealed that she had gone to her sister’s house in Jharkhand about nine months ago. On her way, she had met one Chandni who lured her to come to Delhi. The girl said she was promised a job that would get her ample money. According to her, she initially refused the offer, but later came to Delhi. In Delhi, she spent a few days at a placement agency, after which she was sent to the house in Gurgaon as a domestic help. Her employer reportedly paid Rs.30,000 as commission to the agency owner Amir, and allegedly deposited Rs.3,000 per month in an account number provided by him. According to the girl, she never received any money and insisted that she be sent home. Her employers, a couple working with a private company, told the police that she insisted on talking to her parents a few months ago. They said that since they did not have any phone number, they tried to contact Amir, whose phone was unreachable. After the rescue, a Daily Diary Entry was done at the Sushant Lok Police Station. CHILDLINE (Gurgaon), meanwhile, informed the Child Welfare Committee here, after which the girl was sent to a children’s home. Rishi Kant of NGO Shakti Vahini said the Jharkhand Police was informed and her family been traced. Speaking to The Hindu , National Commission for Scheduled Tribes Chairperson Rameshwar Oraon said that it was a failure on the part of the government to protect the Paharia tribe, whose number was dwindling with each Census. “When there are so many government schemes for Paharia people, why are they forced to come to cities like Gurgaon to earn? Also, there is an urgent need for a law for domestic helps to protect them from exploitation,” said Mr. Oraon.
PUBLISHED IN THE HINDU