West Bengal topped the list of states with the maximum number of human trafficking cases in 2016 followed by Rajasthan as the two accounted for around 61 per cent of such cases in the country.
Of the 8,132 such cases registered across the country last year, 3,576 were from West Bengal and 1,422 from Rajasthan, government officials said.
Rajasthan was followed by Gujarat where 548 such cases were reported last year. Maharashtra reported 517 cases.
Among the Union Territories, Delhi recorded the maximum number of human trafficking cases in 2016. Of the 75 cases registered among the UTs, 66 were registered in Delhi.
However, the national capital data for 2016 showed an improvement compared with the 2015 numbers-- when 87 such cases were reported.
Among the UTs, Delhi was followed by Daman and Diu which reported seven cases. One each was reported from Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Chandigarh.
Among the southern states, the maximum number of cases were reported from Tamil Nadu which registered 434 cases in 2016. It was followed by Karnataka where 404 such cases were registered.
Andhra Pradesh and Telangana registered 239 and 229 such cases respectively, while in Kerala 21 cases were reported.
No case of human trafficking was reported in Jammu and Kashmir, Tripura, Nagaland, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Lakshadweep and Puducherry.
Among the northeastern states, the highest -- 91 cases -- were reported in Assam. The state, however, recorded huge improvement since 2014. It had reported 380 cases of human trafficking in 2014 and 1,480 such cases in 2015.
There were seven cases in Meghalaya, three in Manipur, two each in Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh and one in Sikkim.
To prevent human trafficking, the governments in these states have set up anti-human trafficking squads.
There are 10 such squads in Assam, eight in Arunachal Pradesh, five in Manipur, three in Meghalaya, four each in Mizoram and Nagaland and two each in Sikkim and Tripura in 2016, the officials said.
Himachal Pradesh reported eight cases of human trafficking, while neighbouring Uttarakhand 12.
Among the eastern states, Jharkhand had the maximum number of reported cases of human trafficking in 2016. A total of 109 cases were registered there. Neighbouring Odisha had 84 and Bihar 43 cases.
Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh have registered 79 and 51 cases respectively last year.
To put a check on human trafficking, the Centre had signed memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Bangladesh and United Arab Emirates, they said.
(Feature image source: Reuters)