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Exploitation of Domestic Workers on the increase



Increasing incidents of gross misuse and abuse of the laws relating to rape and sexual abuse and exploitation of uneducated, ignorant and uninformed domestic workers by unscrupulous persons/ placement agencies etc. for their personal gains. Large scale instances of trafficking of women and children by the placement agencies has come to light where these workers are separated from their family and  subject to all kind of ill-treatment and exploitation in the hands of either by the placement agencies or by their employers. Recently, there has also been a spurt of cases relating to rape and sexual abuse being registered on the allegations made by the migrant domestic workers regarding rape and sexual abuse either by the persons of the placement agency or by the employers as in the present case. In many cases these young girls from backward areas are being rampantly exploited by those running the placement agencies who use them (the girls) as pawns to settle their personal scores with their professional rivals and customers who seek employment of such domestic workers from their agencies. Currently there is no regulation controlling or regulating these placement agencies and hence the necessity of putting in place some control and regulatory mechanism for these placement agencies by way of a legislation so that the migrant domestic workers are not exposed to any kind of exploitation as are being observed by the Court. However, till such time it is actually done, the task of both the investigating agency and the Courts becomes onerous so as to ensure on the one hand that the existing penal provisions are not being abused to implicate an innocent and on the other hand that no guilty is left scot free.

Dr Kamini Lau /ASJ Rohini in her judgement in Session Case No 148/11


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