Video Volunteers launches a campaign against human trafficking, called #kNOwTrafficking

Video Volunteers launched an online and offline campaign called “#kNOwTrafficking- Taskari Jaano, Taskaari Roko'' on July 18, 2022. 

The offline components of the campaign are taking place in the tea garden belt and border areas of West Bengal with an aim to combat the prevailing menace of trafficking.   Video Volunteers Community Correspondents are conducting TED-style talks in communities with a high prevalence of trafficking. This is a re-play of a successful series of screenings that Video Volunteers conducted in 2019. 

In July 2022, three talks were held which were attended by a total of 142 people in Darjeeling, North 24 Parganas and South 24 Parganas. The series of video talks, conducted by community correspondents Rubi Saha, Manjil Thapa, Krishna Mondal, Lily Kujur, Puja Thakur, Milon Mondal and Sumit Dewan, will continue till February 2023.

Community Correspondent Krishna Mondal held video talks in Sundarban district’s Kumartuli gram panchayat. The talk was held on  July 22, 2022.

Community Correspondent Milon Mandal conducting a video talk in Baduria Block, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal.

*Photo : Community Correspondent Milon Mandal hosting a video talk in Baduria Block, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal.

Community Correspondent Milan Mondal, who held a first talk in Lakkhinathpur, Baduria Block, North 24 Parganas said, “30 participants were present for the talk including students, self-help groups, youth, children among others. What is trafficking, how agents lure victims, reporting to police about missing persons and helpline were some of the topics discussed during the talk.”

“We got positive responses from the participants. Awareness on trafficking is a dire need in the current scenario where young men and women are lured for work and money. These talks are an eye opener for many in my community who did not even know what trafficking is,” said community correspondent Krishna Mondal, who has been reporting on trafficking stories in Sundarban district.  

Community Correspondent Krishna Mondal talking to her community members about combating trafficking in Sundarban district, West Bengal.

*Photo : Community Correspondent Krishna Mondal talking to her community members about combating trafficking in Sundarban district, West Bengal.

Video Volunteers’ has been documenting stories on trafficking and migration since 2010. 85 cases of trafficking and migration related stories have been reported by our network of community correspondents. 15 cases have been resolved by the efforts by these correspondents which resulted in the rescue of 40 people. 

A social media campaign titled ‘#kNOwTrafficking’ was run simultaneously from July 25 to August 5. During the campaign Video Volunteer’s playlist on ‘Trafficking and Migration’ was shared on YouTube. For this social media campaign we also collaborated with Bachpan Bachao Andolan (Kailash Satyarthi foundation), an anti-trafficking movement focused on child rights and Sanjog, Kolkata based NGO catering with violence against children and women. We reshared posts on trafficking put up by Bachpan Bachao Andolan. A one day online Training on Victim Compensation will be held in association Sanjog on August 23.  

The menace and threat of trafficking in the tea garden areas was discussed in a YouTube live session Nazariya. The panel for which constituted Harihar Nagbanshi, a human rights activist based in the tea garden. Harihar has been a part of several rescue operations and reported on them. The other panelist was Jalpaiguri based community correspondent Rubi Saha, who is currently reporting on trafficking related issues in her community. Both the panelists highlighted the dearth of the situation and how the community is unaware about agents luring young people into trafficking. The trauma witnessed by a rescued person and how as a community member we can help were also discussed during the session. 

Highlights from social media include the factual informative posters that were shared on Instagram and Facebook. An album titled ‘World Day against Trafficking in Persons’ was shared on Facebook. Our very first poster which announced the commencement of the campaign got the most number of views, followed by the poster which stated that “Human Trafficking is the second larget organised crime in India”.

Two reels posted on Instagram - the first one was about 10 men from the Musahar community who were lured for employment and taken to Solapur. The second reel was on a disturbing story of 16-year-old girl Nati, from Jharkhand who was sold by her husband. Nati was raped and impregnated by another man.

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The villages in Sundarbans area of West Bengal State are impoverished. Taking advantage of their poverty, the human traffickers easily find victims to lure away. 

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