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2007 (Narrative date)

The Global Slavery Index 2018 estimates that on any given day there were nearly 8 million people living in modern slavery in India. The GSI 2018 reports an emerging trend in northeast India where organised trafficking syndicates operate along the open and unmanned international borders, duping or coercing young girls seeking employment outside their local area in to forced sexual exploitation. Many women and girls are lured with the promise of a good job but then forced in to sex work, with a 'conditioning' period involving violence, threats, debt bondage and rape. 

Dayita* was 13 years old when she was kidnapped and sold to a brothel. Dayita was finally rescued by the police and now lives in a shelter. She tells of the actions she took to try and escape her situation, as well as her continued fear after being rescued.

Because … I want to eat all those who hit me.

I am 16. I’ve been here 2 years. I take medicine so that I am not so afraid. When I was 13, those boys caught me. They took me to a bad place, they made me do bad things. My stepmother organized all this. She told them how to find me. When I screamed in pain she told them to hurt me more. I cut myself many times, I drank kerosene, I ran away. The police found me and sent me here. Everyone looks at me strangely, I think they will hit me at any moment. Why can’t I go home?


*name given

Narrative ‘A Vengeful Spirit’ featured in the project ‘Another Me: Transformations from Pain to Power