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Operation Stonefly

By October 15, 2020December 29th, 2022No Comments
Operation Stonefly

For Jaanavi*, the monsoon rains meant nothing. Like the floods, the line of customers streamed into the brothel.

Because of your support, our Indian national team was able to quickly identify these brave survivors and, with the help of police partners, bring rescue within days.

Bipasha* had been trafficked for three days before she was found. Lured to India from Bangladesh, she was barely eighteen. Bipasha was hopeful that the job offer would be what she needed – a way to provide for herself, maybe even a chance to save up to dream a little. How could she know that she was one of many girls who fell for this old trick that played upon her vulnerability?

Passport taken, no way to contact her family, she was sold.

Aria* was enslaved for eight days before she was found. She left her parents, left her village, and nervously accepted her first job — an offer to help cook in the kitchen at a bar a couple of hours from home. She had bravely hugged her parents goodbye and ventured out to take her place in the world.

But the “job” turned out to be a violent snare, and her new reality was far worse than the poverty she had hoped to overcome.

Yet these girls were not unseen. Our undercover team BRAVO in India had been fishing again. Sifting through online ads, baiting traffickers, and collecting incriminating information, they quickly put together solid cases to present to the new superintendent of police in the area, an Indian woman of like-minded, action-oriented nature.

They were given permission to execute an operation we shared with you recently. The raid was successful, and they took down a major player in the area’s trafficking network. With one young survivor safely in the care of the social worker, the Search + Rescue team sent a request to the superintendent to conduct another raid with police just 40 kilometers away.

It had already been hours since they began their first mission. The team was weary and wary of the dirty brothels during a world pandemic.

But India’s country director for The Exodus Road does not believe in waiting. He’s known to quote the legal maxim: “Justice delayed is justice denied.”

They were cleared to do the second raid.

After 21 long hours, the Search + Rescue Team found and freed Bipasha and Aria!

Their ten traffickers were arrested.

We are grateful to you for the way you prioritize justice. Your support equips our teams and police partners to keep going until freedom is realized.

*Name, image, and some details representational

Jaanavi means “river”

**2,000 Rupees is about $27 USD.