A woman forced into flesh trade after being forcibly married to a drunkard at the age of 12, has now joined 21 other women to run a fair price shop in Nanded, Aurangabad.
According to Times of India reports, the Nanded district administration decided to rehabilitate sex workers by weaning them away from prostitution to run ration shops and give them a chance at leading normal lives.
In these fair price shops, essential commodities, including staple food grains such as wheat, sugar and rice, are sold at a subsidised rates through the government-run public distribution system (PDS.)
Two self-help groups were set up by the district administration for women sex workers and their female family members. These groups were given permission to run two shops under the PDS in Nanded city and were recently handed over licences to run these shops.
According to reports, food grains have already been handed over to the shops and will be supplied to the citizens around August 25.
Suresh Kakani, District Collector of Nanded, told Times of India, “We had identified 3,500 women from the district who were engaged in different unlawful professions. Around half of them were linked to prostitution. We decided to give them an opportunity to run fair price shops as an effective social and economic rehabilitation measure.”