Speakers yesterday recommended rectifying the definition of “trafficking” in the Saarc Convention on Preventing and Combating Human Trafficking to make it more effective in preventing the social menace in the region.
“The definition is limited only to prostitution and women and children and this does not cover all the illegal transport of people between the countries,” said Salma Ali, executive director of Bangladesh National Women Lawyers’ Association (BNWLA).
It is not only women and children who are trafficked for prostitution, but also men who are trafficked for forced labour. These issues should be incorporated in the convention, she said.
She was speaking at a press conference organised by BNWLA and Action against Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation of Children at Jatiya Press Club in the city, a day ahead of the Indian premier’s visit.
“We share a large border and a lot of people are illegally transported from Bangladesh to India and vice versa,” said Salma.
Approximately 1,500 Bangladeshi citizens, victims of human trafficking, are in India and they are unable to come home, she added.
“When prime ministers Sheikh Hasina and Manmohan Singh meet, they should consider the failings of the articles and take steps to rectify it,” she added.
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