I’ve had this blog for awhile. Entries from my time in India with Word Made Flesh and then Peace Corps. With WordPress, they have a section in “My Stats” where you can see what people searched that brought them to your blog. “Peace Corps: What to Pack” is a big hit.
One of today’s searches makes my heart sink. Someone searched for “name of the nepali girls building in sonagachi” meaning that someone was most likely trying to find the brothel with Nepali underage girls.
Sonagachi is a neighborhood of Kolkata, India, that has around 12,000 individuals who are sex workers, some trafficked, some underage, and it’s complicated. Sonagachi is only one of the multiple areas of Kolkata that are known for having thousands of sex workers in the red light district, working the line.
When I read what someone searched that lead them to my blog, all I could think about was the timid face of a 15 year old Nepali girl. The American staff from WMF that I was with would do daily visits to women who lived in the Sonagachi brothels. She was sort of like the calm within the storm. We were walking from one building to the next when we saw the Nepali girl. She looked uncomfortable in her skin, a lot of make-up, and she awkwardly tried to lengthen her short skirt. She looked like she had only been there a few days. I wish I could have said something in her language. I wish I could have shown that someone cared for her as a human being and not as a commodity for quick pleasure.