Human trafficking is a kind of modern-day slavery wherein individuals are
illegally traded for various purposes like sex work, forced labor, organ
trafficking, from one place to another sometimes they are transported to
different countries. In today's time it has become one of the major global
problems to combat with. It is a gender biased crime; the women and children are
the worst sufferers of trafficking in person. There are various forms
trafficking in person.
- Sex trafficking: it is a kind of human trafficking wherein the
individuals are traded and recruited for the purpose of proving sexual
favors. The victims are usually young women and children who are forced or
coerced for engaging into such activities. Sex trafficking also includes
pornography, stripping, live sex shows, exotic dance moves etc. Thailand is
the worst affected country for the purpose of sex trafficking in South Asia.
- Labor trafficking: in this kind of trafficking the victims are
transported for the purpose of forced labor and work for a consideration of
very less or no money. They are made to work exhaustively in the fields,
construction work, industries etc. In India the labor are transported from
regions of Bihar, Odisha,
Jharkhand to the other states and countries like Arabs for very little or no
money. Thailand also harbors forced labor in their huge fishing industry.
- Child Trafficking: It is a kind of human trafficking wherein the persons
are forced to marry somebody against their will. In 2013 a study was
conducted in 92 villages of India that included 10,000 households the
results that came out of that study showed that 9000 women belonging to
different households were subjected to marry against their wills. A similar
condition Thailand also faces, underage girls in Thailand are married off to
- Organ Trafficking: It is a variant of human trafficking in which the
organs of the deceased person or living person is taken out from the body
without obtaining any kind of consent from the victim or the family member
of the victim. The organs are then later used for implantation or
preservation purposes. India tops in trading kidney in the world. Talking
about Thailand it is now becoming transplant hub and the United Nations have
also warned about the increase of organ trafficking in South Asian
countries. As per Global data research, countries generate a huge profit by
the way of organ trafficking. The profit margin ranges between $600 and $1.2
- Trafficking for begging: in this kind of human trafficking, the
offenders usually target children as they are most vulnerable group in the
society. The victims are usually subjected to violence and are forced to beg
in streets and at the end of the day they have to give all their income to
the offenders. A report by the Indian National Human Right Commission shows
that almost 40000 children are abducted every year and 30,000 children beg
in streets every day. Talking about Thailand, it is in somewhat better
condition than India. Research points out that in Thailand there are approx
1000 trafficked child beggars in Thailand.
- Illegal Adoption : it is a kind of in person trafficking wherein the
children are illegally adopted. The offenders get money in return of selling
children. Sometimes they are even traded outside of the country. To combat
this issue Hauge Adoption Convention was brought in.
In the year 2000, the United Nations came up with UN protocol Prevent , Suppress
and Punish Trafficking in person especially women and children. It defined
trafficking as ".....the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or
receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of
coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of
position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits
to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the
purpose of exploitation.
Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the
exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual
exploitation, forced labour or service, slavery or practice similar to slavery,
servitude or the removal of organ." It basically considers three majors forms
of trafficking they are Sex trafficking, forced labour and organ trafficking.
This definition given by the United Nations is internationally accepted. UN
recognises 30th July as the World Anti Trafficking day.
This article basically compares the laws relating to sex trafficking in India
with that to Thailand with reference to provisions of the United Nations.
Comparative Analysis Laws relating to Prostitution and Sex Trafficking in India
with that to Thailand
In India laws relating to sex trafficking and prostitution is governed by the
Immoral Traffic (prevention ) Act, 1956. This act defines prostitution in
section 2f of the Act. It says that prostitution is sexual exploitation and
abuse of a person for obtaining commercial gains and monetary benefits. In
Thailand the laws relating to prostitution is governed by "Prevention and
Suspension of Prostitution Act B.E 2539 (1996)".
The term prostitution is
defined in section 4 (1) of the said act. It says that prostitution is offering
of sexual intercourse or any other act in order to fulfil the sexual desires of
a person in exchange of any monetary benefit or commercial gain or any other
thing. It is irrespective whether the individuals involved are of same gender or
opposite gender. In India the act doesn't talk about sexual exploitation of the
people with same gender. To combat the issue of prostitution internationally the
Convention on the Suppression of Traffic in Persons and Exploitation of the
Prostitution and others was passed by the General Assembly of the United
Section 2 (a) of the Immoral Traffic Prevention Act defines brothel
which means any place, room or house that is being used by the parties for the
process of sexual abuse or obtaining mutual benefit. Section 3 of the aforesaid
act deals about the penalties relating for keeping brothel or allowing of any
such premises for keeping of brothel. According to section 3 of the Immoral
Traffic Prevention Act any person who engages in keeping of brothel shall be
punished with rigorous imprisonment for a term exceeding 1 year and for a term
less than 3 years, he shall be also punished with fine that may extend of
rupees 2000, on first conviction.
On account of second conviction, he shall be
punished with rigorous imprisonment of more than 2 years and less than 5 years,
he shall be also punished with fine that may extend to 2000 rupees. Section 3
(2) of the act says that any person who has the knowledge or idea that brothel
activity is taking place in a premise and he knowingly allows such activity to
take place or uses such premise, he being lessor, lessee, tenant, owner of such
premise shall be punished with imprisonment for a term of maximum 2 years and a
fine of up to rupees two thousand, on account of first conviction.
On account of
second conviction , the person should be punished with imprisonment for a term
of maximum 5 years and fine of maximum rupees 2000. Talking about the laws of
Thailand, section 4 (2) of the Prevention and Suppression of Prostitution Act B.E 2539 (1996) defines brothel as prostitution establishment as premise that
has been designated for prostitution to take place or a premise wherein practice
of prostitution takes place or a place where a person solicits for prostitution.
Section 11 of the said act says that any person who is held guilty for being the
owner or the manager of the said premise shall be punished with imprisonment
from 3 years to 15 years and also with fine that may extend up to 60 thousand to
three hundred thousand Baht. It also has subsequent provisions that if a person
is held guilty for being the owner or manager of a brothel wherein there is a
sex slave below the age of eighteen and above the age fifteen then such person
shall be punished with imprisonment of term that may extend for a term between 5
years to 15 years.
He is also liable to pay a fine that may range between 1
hundred thousand to three hundred thousand Baht. And if the owner or the manager
is held guilty for having prostitute whose age is less than 15 years of age then
in such he shall be imprisoned for a term that may extend for a period between
10yrs to 20 years and also be fined that may range from two hundred thousand to
four hundred thousand Baht. Article 2 of the United Nations Convention for the
Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the
Prostitution of Others directs the parties of the convention to punish anyone
who finances brothel or who provide rent to a premise for prostitution to take
place. Both India and Thailand have provisions against Brothel and owning or
having a brothel is illegal in both the countries.
Section 4 of the Immoral
traffic prevention act talks about living on the earnings of prostitution.
According to this section any person who is over the age of 18 years and lives
on the earnings of prostitute by being in her/his company or being her pimp will
be imprisoned up to 2 years or with fine up to 1000 rupees or both ,and in
situations where the age of the prostitute is below 16 years or below 18 years
shall be punished with imprisonment of a term ranging between 7 years to 10
Talking about the laws of the Thailand "section 10 of PREVENTION AND
SUPPRESSION OF PROSTITUTION ACT B.E. 2539 (1996)", says that any person who is
parent or guardian of s person whose age is below 18 yrs and crime of
prostitution is committed on him/her when the child is under parental control
shall be punished with imprisonment ranging between 4 yrs to 20 years.
be also liable to pay fine that ranged between eighty thousand to four hundred
thousand Baht. "According to article 1(2) of the United Nations Convention for
the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the
Prostitution of Others the parties present in the convention should punish
offenders who exploits prostitutes or sex slaves even with their consent".
the countries have their own provisions dealing with penalties against persons
who live in the earnings of prostitute. However, the laws of Thailand only held
parents and guardians guilty of the offence whereas in India every such person
who commits such offence is held liable of the punishments.
Section 5 of the
immortal traffic prevent act , 1956 deals with punishment relating to inducing a
person to prostitution ,it is immaterial that such an act is done with consent
of prostitute. "If offence is committed with the consent of person he shall be
punished with rigorous imprisonment of a term 3 years to 7 years also and if
such act is committed against the will of a person then he shall be punished
with a term of minimum 7 years and maximum 14 years."
Again, if this offence is
committed against a child below the age of 16 years then the offender shall be
punished with rigorous imprisonment for a term of minimum 7 years and maximum of
life imprisonment. And if this offence is committed against a minor ,i.e, a
person whose age is above16 years and below the age of 18 years then he shall be
punished with rigorous imprisonment of a term of minimum 7 years and maximum of
14 years. Talking about laws of Thailand in this context, section 9 of the
prevention and suppression of prostitutes act of 1996 deals with penalties
relating to inducement of person into prostitution.
Likewise, India here also
person gets punished for inducing a person into prostitution even after having
consent of the individuals. A person held guilty of committing such acts will be
punished with imprisonment for a term of minimum one year and maximum of 10
years and he has to also pay fine that may range between twenty thousand to two
hundred thousand Baht.
Again, if such offence is committed against a person who
is above the age of 15 years and below the age of 18 years then in such cases
the person held guilty shall be punished with imprisonment of minimum of 5 years
and maximum of 15 years and fine may range from between one hundred thousand to
three hundred thousand Baht. In cases where in the offence is committed against
the child of below the age of 15 years then the punishment for the offence
committed is imprisonment for a term that may range between 10 years to 20 years
and fine amount may range from two hundred thousand to four hundred thousand.
Thailand if these offences are committed against the will of the victim and the
offence is committed by way of fraud, coercion or undue influence then the
penalty is awarded one third times harsher. According to Article 1 (1) of the
United Nations Convention the parties should punish anybody who induces anyone
to prostitution even if such act is done with the consent of the person who is
induced into the prostitution.
Both India and Thailand have provisions to punish
the person who induces other to prostitution. Section 6, of the Immoral Traffic
Prevention Act, talks about the penalties for committing the offence of
detaining someone in a brothel. According to this section a person who commits
such acts shall be punished with imprisonment of minimum 7 years that may also
extend till life or 10 years of imprisonment.
Talking about the laws of
Thailand, "Section 12 of the Prevention and Suppression of Prostitution Act,
1996" deals about the penalties for committing offence of detaining a person by
way of violence in order to commit prostitution , then he liable to be punished
with imprisonment of a term between 10 years to twenty years with fine that may
range from two hundred thousand to four hundred thousand Baht.
laws are more specific as compared to Indian laws in this regard as Thailand
have the provisions to punish the offender who by means of detaining the victim
causes bodily harm to the victim, then he shall be imprisoned for life and when
the offender causes death of the victim he is liable to be punished with death
sentence or imprisonment.
Apart from these India has punishment prescribed
against a person who carries on a prostitution business within 200 meters of a
public area whereas, laws of Thailand does not talk in this regard. In India,
punishment is prescribed for soliciting for the purpose of prostitution. A
person found guilty of such offences shall be liable for imprisonment of a term
6 months and a fine of rupees 500. However, Thailand remains silent on this.
As we come towards the end of the comparative analysis of punishments with
regards to sex trafficking, it is concluded that Indian law that deals with
human trafficking only considers prostitution as a kind of human trafficking. It
ignores all other ways in which human trafficking is done.
Government should come up with proper legislation to combat with human
trafficking. Also, the provisions of the Immoral traffic Prevention Act is
outdated and needs to be amendment. The penalty amount for various offences is
really minimal. The act as failed to protect individuals against trafficking.
Though, Thailand has stricter provisions in regards to human trafficking still
it has failed to curb the problem of trafficking.
It is considered as the global hub for illegal sex trade. There are severe and
grave of human rights abuse, in the fishing industry of Thailand. There are also
large numbers of child trafficking cases still no appropriate action has been
taken by the Thai government. The Thai government turns blind when it comes to
prostitution and human trafficking as it generates huge income in the country.
- UN protocol Prevent, "Suppress and Punish Trafficking in person especially women and children"
- Immoral Traffic Prevention Act, 1956
- Prevention and Suspension of Prostitution Act B.E 2539 (1996)
- Convention on the Suppression of Traffic in Persons and Exploitation of Prostitution
Award Winning Article Is Written By: Ms.Shambhavi Malviya
Authentication No: OT330228861657-29-1023