In India, the social system is based on the concept of hierarchical caste, and even if discrimination based on the Indian caste was made illegal over 70 years ago, it still persists and it is one of the major causes of poverty and rigid social norms in the country. .
In 2020, India had a population of 1.380 billion people, and approximately 437 million were under the age of 18 . India being ranked 15th out of 60 countries scored in the Out of the Shadows Index on the country’s response to child sexual exploitation and abuse, child sexual exploitation and abuse is largely spread within the country .
Children in India are mostly affected by child trafficking for sexual exploitation purposes . The risks for child trafficking increase in situations of extreme poverty, as children lack access to services and opportunities. As an example, poverty, barriers to education, and practices such as paying dowry all contribute to the high levels of child trafficking within India.
Children in India are highly subjected to sexual exploitation and abuse in the travel and tourism sector. Some regions within the country have historically been identified as purposeful destinations for the sexual exploitation of children, who are usually brought into these situations because of child trafficking routes .
There is very little research on the sexual exploitation of children in India, and ECPAT’s mission is to ensure that action is taken towards the protection of all children against any form of child sexual exploitation and abuse!