New Delhi, March 10: The Government gave its approval to a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Bahrain on Thursday on cooperation of prevention of human trafficking of women and children as well as rescue, recovery, repatriation and re-integration of victims of trafficking.
This MoU will strengthen the bonds of friendship between the two countries and increase the bilateral cooperation on the issues of prevention, rescue, recovery and repatriation related to human trafficking especially women and children expeditiously.
The MoU is expected to be signed during the Home Ministers upcoming visit to Bahrain in the first week of April 2016. The following are the salient features of the Memorandum of Understanding between India and Kingdom of Bahrain:
As a destination of trafficking, South Asian countries are mainly affected by domestic trafficking, or trafficking from the neighboring countries. However, South Asian victims are also increasingly detected in the Middle East.
India is a source and transit country as far as trafficking to Bahrain is concerned. On the other hand, Bahrain is a destination country for men and women subjected to trafficking in persons, specifically forced labour and forced prostitution. Men and women from South Asia migrate voluntarily to Bahrain to work as domestic workers or as unskilled laborers in the construction and service industries.
However, some face conditions of forced labour after arriving in Bahrain, through use of such practices as unlawful withholding of passport, restrictions on movement, contract substitution, non-payment of wages, threats, and physical or sexual abuse.
The reinforcement of anti-trafficking efforts at all levels between the Kingdom of Bahrain and India is essential for prevention and protection of victims. This requires mutual cooperation among both the countries for intelligence sharing, joint investigation and a coordinated response to the challenges of human trafficking.
For this purpose, it is proposed to sign a MoU with the Kingdom of Bahrain. Indian Government has already signed one MoU to prevent trafficking with Bangladesh.