Over 400 women and girls from western Nepal go missing in India, other countries in 2022

File: Nepal-India border point in Nepalgunj sealed in the run-up to local level elections in Nepal, on Monday, June 26, 2017.

western Nepal
File: The Jamunaha border point near Nepalgunj is a major route for human trafficking from western Nepal.

Ranjha, January 1

At least 444 women and girls who reached various countries from western Nepal supposedly for jobs have gone missing.

The data is based on the applications submitted at the Maiti Nepal, Nepalgunj chapter in 2022 with the requests for their search. As said by chapter coordinator Keshab Koirala, the organisation received 693 applications for finding out the whereabouts of this many people and of them, 249 were found.

Families and relatives of women and girls who lost contact with the families after reaching India and other third countries sought the organisation’s help to find their whereabouts.

Meanwhile, 529 women and girls who were perceived to be on a risky journey were turned back from the Jamunaha transit point along the Nepal-India border in Banke.

During the interrogations, they were found to have left their home without family consultations, for employment or for a trip. Most of them were from Surkhet.

Koirala believes the use of social sites and lack of digital security have further fuelled the issues of human trafficking and smuggling.

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