South Asia

Enslaved for Two Decades, Families Struggle to “Envision Freedom” On Day of Rescue

CHENNAI, INDIA – More than thirty people were set free last week from a life of slavery—for some it was the only life they had ever known.

IJM and its partner, the Association for Rural Development (ARD), had uncovered a woodcutting operation where slaves were working 19-hour days—and some had been there for 19 years. On October 30, IJM and ARD staff presented the shocking evidence of slavery to the district government. The government mobilized a team to conduct a rescue operation.

IJM Kolkata: Sex Trafficking Survivors Leads Team to Rescue More Girls

KOLKATA, INDIA – Earlier this month, IJM and police worked together on a complex operation to rescue three girls who were being sold for sex. The rescue team went to four different locations to find three different suspects—a remarkable demonstration of close coordination and effective collaboration.

But even more amazing was the courageous young woman named Sarika* who made the operation possible in the first place—just a few weeks earlier, Sarika was being sold for sex in a Kolkata brothel. After she was rescued, she told IJM she wanted to help rescue others.

IJM Helps Rescue 35 Girls Enslaved in Thread-Making Factory

CHENNAI, INDIA – In a shocking rescue at a thread-making factory in Southern India, thirty-five girls between 14 and 18 years old were set free from slavery last week. Many had been trafficked from faraway states—forced to live and work nearly 2,000 miles away from their families. Ten men were also rescued from the factory.

A Fight for Freedom