Vijayawada: Andhra Pradesh stood in third place in human trafficking in India, while Telangana state took the second place and Maharashtra the first slot. As many as 1,714 such cases were registered across the country in 2020.
The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) released the latest data, which showed Maharashtra stood at top with 184 human trafficking cases (IPC) and the Telugu states Telangana and AP were in the second and third places. Telangana state got the second place with 184 cases and AP the third place with 171 cases.
Activists working against human trafficking lamented over the poor conviction rate in such cases and urged the AP government to set up anti-human trafficking units in all districts to ensure speedy justice to the victims.
As many as 240 human trafficking cases were registered in 2018 which increased to 245 in 2019 and decreased to 171 in 2020.
The charge-sheeting rate in human trafficking cases is 99.2 per cent in AP and 98.4 per cent in Telangana state. As many as 257 victims were rescued in AP in 2020, of which eight victims were below age 18 and the rest 249 were above 18.
The main purpose of human trafficking in a majority of the cases was of prostitution, while forced labour and using them as domestic helps were the other causes.
The conviction in the human trafficking cases was very poor. Only five cases were convicted and 56 cases acquitted/discharged by the courts in AP during the period under review.
The conviction rate is only 8.2 per cent in AP and the condition is worse in Telangana where it was only 1.9 per cent. In TS, there were convictions in only two cases and acquittal in 103 cases in 2020.
As many as 619 persons were arrested in AP in 2020 in various cases, in which 324 persons were charge-sheeted, 13 were convicted and 181 were acquitted by courts. Similarly, in Telangana, 752 persons were arrested in human trafficking cases in 2020, of which 684 were charge-sheeted, two convicted and 126 persons acquitted by courts.
As many as 30 anti-human trafficking units (AHTU) operate in Telangana state but AP has only three AHTUs in 13 districts.
The convener of the network against trafficking and sexual exploitation in AP (NATSAP) Ram Mohan Nimmaraju said this is the source and destination state for trafficking in men and women. He sought the setting up of AHTUs in all districts of AP with required staffs and amenities to curb human trafficking in the state.