JAMMU, SEP 13
The sex trade in India has surpassed annual revenue of Rs 50 billion, and official's police say that Kashmiri prostitutes who include Male and Female have led the Prostitution business across the Country for several years. Police department says that that all the big names in the prostitution business hail from Jammu and Kashmir state specially "Kashmir". "Fair girls from Kashmir are a craze among the elite. Many such women also command their own rackets in different parts of the country and in Jammu and Srinagar as well and their earnings go in crores," said a police official on the bases of anonymity. However Jammu and Kashmir is the only state in the country where prostitution is legal. According to the Public Prostitutes Registration Rules, 1921, a prostitute can carry on her trade legally if she registers herself with the District Magistrate. She has to fill in a simple application form, file it in person and pay Rs 5 as fee, and the minimum money which she can charge is Rs 15. The Government admits that the rules are still in force and could be invoked. Sanctioned by the Darbar of the then Maharja Hari Singh vide Chief Minister letter No 17197, dated February 12, 1921, these rules were first published in Government Gazette of the same year. The rules define a public prostitute as ''a woman who earns her livelihood by offering her person to lewdness for hire.'' The rules also allow for the role of a brothel keeper and defines him or her as ''the occupier of any house, room, tent, boat, or place resorted to by person of both sexes for the purpose of committing sexual immorality.'' Official added. However, the brothel keeper has to ensure that he does not keep the prostitutes who are not registered with the Government. Though the State tries its sex offenders under the Prevention of Immoral Trafficking Act (PITA) and the sections of its own Ranbir Penal Code, the rules of 1921 have not been repealed.
The rules are still published in J&K Laws, the State's statute book. In a recent incident of major embarrassment for the state government a top National Conference aide Altaf Wani alias Altaf Kaluu was allegedly caught in a compromising position with a woman named Dr. Farhat who is an anchor with Doordarsh Srinagar on a houseboat. The female anchor was arrested by Police near Bagh-e-Shagoofa in the Nageen Lake in Hazratbal area in the evening on September 9th and booked in a matter of "committing obscene act at a public place". In FIR No: 110 under section 294 RPC, Police had arrested the female anchor caught with the NC leader and former MLC, Altaf Ahmed Kaluu. However soon after this incident, Doordarshan's Additional Director General, Ashok Jailkhani, has banned the female anchor's appearance in Doordarshan Kendra (DDK) Srinagar's morning show "Good Morning J&K" and all other programmes. Meanhile the National Conference too has suspended its EX-MLC from the party. Meanwhile Director Doordarshan Kendra Srinagar, Shammi Shair, has been transferred and attached to Doordarshan Headquarters in New Delhi. Director Doordarshan Kendra Leh, Qayoom Wadera, has been appointed as the new Director for Doordarshan Kendra Srinagar. According to Sources the ouster of the TV anchor from the Door Darshan may show doors to many top officials including some producers. The tainted anchor has alleged that many top officials and some producers were allegedly harassing her by calling up her on the mobile and the woman claims that her staff members behaved inappropriately toward her on daily basis. They allegedly made sexually charged comments that the woman found inappropriate and made her uncomfortable. The anchor also claimed that her senior staff members physically harassed her. They would catch the anchor off guard and grope her before she could push him away, she says. She said it is not only my case but several other female staff members also face situation they also are being harassed by their seniors. The anchor said I will knock the doors of the Court for the Justice, and the court will decide who is right and who is wrong.