Activists oppose move to legalise prostitution

Activists oppose move to legalise prostitution

Women activists are questioning the logic behind the move to legalise prostitution even as the National Commission for Women said it will put up a proposal before a Supreme Court appointed panel to recommend amendments in trafficking laws. 

 “Legalisation of prostitution goes against the International Labour Organisation’s definition of “decent work” and is considered as selling sex under “distress,” says Ranjana Kumari , president, Women Power Connect.  “Instead of criminalising the buying and selling of sex, we are giving more power to those who exploit sex workers,” she said. 

However, NCW Chairperson Lalitha Kumaramangalam is all set to put forth the issue in the National Consultation scheduled to be held on November 8, by a Supreme Court panel. 

The court ordered the NCW to attend the meetings of the panel and it is to make recommendations for amending Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956. According to its reference,  the recommendations are to be made for  making “conditions conductive for sex workers to live with dignity in accordance with the provision of Article 21 of the Constitution’’.   

The NCW chairperson is advocating legalising prostitution  to regulate the trade and ensure better living conditions for women engaged in commercial sex work.

 According to her, it will also bring down trafficking and lower the incidence of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.  

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