Review of Laws and Legislative Measures Affecting Women
by National Commission for Women (NCW)

No. 3: The Immoral Traffic Prevention Act, 1956

  • Suggested amendments supported by NCW

Suggested Amendments by NCW
  1. The word 'person' used in the Act for the purpose of punishment, should be substituted with the words 'man and woman' because the women in prostitution only are punished and the man who play an important role in he process goes without punishment.

  2. In place of the words 'commercial sex worker' the word 'prostitute' should continue to be sued.

  3. The names of the women in red-light areas should be included in the voters' list.

  4. A group insurance scheme should be introduced for the women in red light areas.

  5. There should be a provision in the Act to distinguish the girls who are thrown forcibly into the prostitution through an act of rape and intimidation and the punishment should be made more stringent for the person responsible. Very often such girls are rescued only after their prolonged stay in the brothels and it is not possible to point out who was the first client although the first client is invariably committing rape on her. In case of such girls, the Brother owner, pimps and touts should be charged as abettors and onus of the proof should be on them that ;they have not abetted/forced the girl/woman to enter into prostitution through the act of rape.

    The law enforcement machinery should also be made more effective to save those girls in time who are likely to be forced into prostitution.

  6. As per the recent figures of crimes recorded by Delhi Police, of all the persons arrested under different provision of the Act nearly 85 to 95 % accused were women. This clearly brings out the fact that the present law is not very effective in stopping prostitution because the men involved in promoting prostitution are mostly not considered guilty. It is especially surprising to note that there are many more women arrested for being pimps and touts.

  7. It is also necessary to bring out suitable amendment in the Act to punish the customer who visits the red light areas for having sex at a commercial price.

  8. Provision should be made to provide Free Education to the women in prostitution under various non-formal/adult education scheme.

  9. Schemes for vocational training should be available to the women in prostitution so that they can earn their livelihood by other means if they decide to come out of the flesh trade.

  10. There should be a specific provision that police personnel/related department should render help and support to the NGOs and communities who are working for the welfare of the women in prostitution.

     

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