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Siliguri sex workers demand equal status ahead of polls

Siliguri (West Bengal), Thu, 24 Mar 2011 ANI

Siliguri, (West Bengal), Mar.24 (ANI): Demanding equal status and respect in society, sex workers in Siliguri have urged regional political parties to address their concerns ahead of provincial polls.


Hundreds of sex workers voiced their concerns during the pre-poll campaigning of Rudranarayan Bhattacharjee, a candidate of the Trinamool Congress (TMC) from Siliguri, who assured them his support.


Highlighting their plight, the sex workers told Bhattacharjee about their living and working conditions, coupled with their struggle between abject poverty and social apathy.


Some sex workers also complained against the discrimination faced by them in the society for their 'work,' asserting they were earning their livelihood through legitimate means.


Sita Bhaduri, a sex worker, said: " We want to live like normal people. We work as hard as rickshaw pullers and vendors but we do not get the same place in the society. We sell our bodies to survive, we are not perpetrating thefts and crimes to earn money."


Stressing that it was the duty of the government to resolve the issues of sex workers, Bhattcharjee said he would fight for their rights if elected.


Despite the assurance given by Bhattacharjee, the sex workers remained sceptical, slamming the political leaders for using them as 'votebanks,' without fulfilling their promises.


Although prostitution is illegal in India, it is a thriving underground industry and voluntary groups estimate that there are about 2 million women sex workers operating in the country today. (ANI)



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