M‘luru: Prostitution gang busted, 6 girls rescued

MANGALURU: The coastal city on Friday woke up to a horror of human trafficking after and Mysuru-based NGO (OSS) jointly busted a sophisticated , wherein trafficked girls allegedly from Bangladesh were forced into prostitution in a specially designed lodge near Pumpwell here.
As many as six girls have been rescued and 11 persons arrested so far. Five girls, who are minors, have managed to flee from the spot using a secret hideout.

According to OSS directors and , who have been keeping a close watch on human trafficking and prostitution for nearly six months, they managed to bust the racket with support from Mangaluru city police. The entire operation was headed by Uma Prashant, DCP (crime and traffic), ACPs and police from the respective jurisdictional station and OSS.

Speaking to TOI, Stanley and Parashuram explained that lodge facility was restructured to facilitate prostitution by using trafficked women from Bangladesh. In case of police raids, all the victims and customers were shifted to a specially designed den-kind of a room. They said the secret chamber was situated in a one of the dirtiest washrooms in the lodge. The receptionist at the entrance has two bells — one for ringing for normal works, and the other to alert the inmates about police raids. The moment the second bell is rung, customers and victims used to rush to that washroom and sneak inside. The secret chamber leads to another safe room.

However, it was not easy to identify the secret chamber as it is camouflaged as a washroom. Stanley said that a portion of the wall was chipped and converted into a door. Same tiles were used, complete with clear finishing, so no one could spot it even during a thorough search. It was closed from the other side. The duo said that they wanted to bust human trafficking for a long, but it could not materialize due to various reasons.

Stanley also alleged that several such human trafficked girls are being forced into prostitution in Mangaluru. He claimed that it was supported by locals and some departments. Apart victims from Bangladesh, girls were also trafficked from Nepal to Mangaluru, and it is active for many years now.

According to sources, most of the customers are from Kerala, who frequent the place. Police also have recovered a huge quantities of condoms from the spot. A probe is on to find out those behind the racket.

DCP Uma said that girls are not from Bangladesh, but belong to various places in Karnataka. “So far, we have arrested 11 persons and rescued six girls. The number of arrests may up as the investigation is under progress,” she added.

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