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The Northeast region is a hotspot of human trafficking landlocked by international borders coupled with ethnic violence and armed conflict in the area, said Assam State Commission for Women chairperson Mridula Saharia today.

"The NE remains a hotspot as the region is shared by many international borders like China, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Nepal. Most of them are open and unmanned providing easy passage in and out of India for organised human trafficking syndicates to operate undetected," Saharia said.

Speaking at the Regional Level Conference on Trafficking of Women here in collaboration with the National Commission for Women, she pointed out that trafficking is of two types.

"In cross-border trafficking the victims are from the other neighbouring countries. The other is trafficking within the state and across the state," the ASCW chairperson said.

"Assam being landlocked is vulnerable to trafficking and increasingly being recognised as one of the major source, transit and destination states needing urgent attention to combat trafficking and commercial exploitation of women and children," she said.

With trafficking networks in Assam getting well established over the years, Saharia said the girls were trafficked to the brothels in Mumbai, Delhi, Nagpur, Pune, Siliguri, Kolkata, Chappra and several other red light areas of Bihar and West Bengal.

In the state, the worst affected districts are Dhubri, Kokrajhar, Barpeta, Bongaigaon, Nalbari, Kamrup, besides Guwahati and the Barak Valley districts, she said.

To uproot the problem and tackle the issue, the ASCW chairperson said, "We have to understand the cultural, social and economic background of the areas or the communities in which the incidences have taken place and then to make strategies to address the menace in an integrated manner".

In view of this all steps of prevention, rescue, rehabilitation, reintegration and repatriation have to be focused on, Saharia added.

For prevention and eradication of trafficking, she pointed out there was an urgent need for formulating, innovating and educating people to understand, sensitise and raise awareness at all levels, particularly on its adverse effect on human beings.

Relentlessly working to create awareness against this menace, she said, the ASWC had recommended the government for imparting of training to village headmen and local police personnel to prevent trafficking of women and children.

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