HYDERABAD: Last year’s rescue of 33 Thai women from the clutches of sex trafficking in Hyderabad raised red flags in Thailand government over the volume and seriousness of sex trafficking of women from Thailand to India.
Krongkanit Rakcharoen, Consul General, Royal Thai Consulate General, Chennai, said that the rescue of such large number of women served as an eye-opener for the Thai government. She was attending the inaugural of the two-day South Asia Regional Conference on Preventing Human Trafficking, organised in the city by anti-trafficking NGO Prajwala in collaboration with US Consulate General Hyderabad and Catholic Relief Services.
Rakcharoen said, “It made it clear that the issue is getting more serious in India. That is why the Minister concerned from the Thailand government is in talks with the Indian government. To me, personally, it was a shock. It was a warning sign for me.” She added, “In the past this kind of problem was not there, these kind of reports were not there.” She added, “Today, India is one of the countries we have to develop more cooperation with. Our government has started having more talks with India on the issue and is planning to have bilateral or multilateral cooperation now.”
Rakcharoen said, “Many Thai girls looking for a career in the hospitality industry are getting attracted to India. Thai masseuse are known all over the world for their skills in massage. Women traveling from Thailand to other countries, including India, are warned about the dangers of getting trapped into sexual trafficking.”
Rattana Nontapattamadul, Director at Ministry of Social Development and Human Security, Thailand, speaking to Express said that the first draft of a Convention on Human trafficking is already prepared.
Speaking on Thailand’s approach on trafficking, Rakcharoen said, “Human trafficking has been one of the national agendas in Thailand since 2004. Thailand has a zero-tolerance policy. Even if high ranking government officials are involved, we prosecute them. Recently there was a trafficking case involving a Rohingya immigrant, in which a Thai high ranking official was caught. The official was prosecuted.”