NHRC gets list of 598 ‘trafficking victims’
A Malaysia-based NGO today handed over a list of 598 trace-less Bangladeshi trafficking victims to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) today for investigation and taking steps to bring them back home.
“We are very concerned by the rising number of human trafficking victims from Bangladesh. We don’t notice any stern action by the government to combat the human trafficking. There is no official information about the victims. So, we are now preparing a list of the missing people across the country,” Mohammad Harun Al Rashid, regional coordinator of Caram Asia, told The Daily Star.
From June 1, Caram Asia along with some Bangladeshi NGOs started to prepare the list of missing people who have allegedly been trafficked through the Bay of Bengal, and the list is being continuously updated.
Meanwhile, Imam Uddin Kabir, deputy director of NHRC who received the list, said they would verify whether they were the human trafficking victims.
Relatives of 12 missing people were also present at the NHRC at that time. They alleged that local human traffickers lured their relatives to take illegal and risky sea journey for lucrative jobs in Malaysia. They demanded that the government find out their relatives and bring them back.
“My sons’ schooling has been stopped since my husband went missing after he had left home in the name of getting a job in Malaysia through Cox’s Bazar on March this year. He was the lone breadwinner for our six family members. Now, my little sons are working hard in the field for our food,” Halima Akter, wife of missing Royel Mia from Araihajar in Narayanganj, told The Daily Star.
“Dalals (local traffickers) told us to manage money for my husband, my brother and our relative. They (traffickers) frequently called us for money, but they did not give any information about the trio,” Halima added. But the families now have no information about the missing people.
Meanwhile, the organisation is also gathering information about the missing people from their families and relatives across the country. The hotline numbers in Bangladesh include 8801984-766346, +8801984-766347 and +8801984-766348, while the numbers in Malaysia are +60169410952 and +60143239146.