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Book on life of former sex workers to be released on March 9

Ten former sex workers from Goa’s now defunct Baina red light area have penned stories about their experiences as they embraced a new life for a book which will be released by Governor Mridula Sinha.

The book – ‘Beautiful Women’ – a collection of stories of the 10 women who chose to quit commercial sex work a decade ago by joining the mainstream, will be released by Sinha on March 9.

“This is the first ever book which speaks about the life of a prostitute in the exploitation phase and after they were rescued,” Arun Pandey, Convenor Anyay Rahit Zindagi (ARZ), an NGO working for rehabilitation of commercial sex workers, said.

ARZ, which has provided alternative livelihood to these women through its laundry established 10 years ago, has published the book.

“It is a first person narrative which brings to light the social, psychological, physical and financial pressures that these women had to negotiate while in prostitution and how life changed after joining the alternative livelihood,” he said.

Baina red light area, located in port town of Vasco, was demolished by the Manohar Parrikar-led government in 2004 to make way for a road. Around 1,500 sex workers operated from there.

“The women who have narrated their stories in the book were 18-19 years old when they decided to give up the profession and join an alternative livelihood. This was 10 years back,” Pandey said.

Some of women were rescued by ARZ while rest joined on their own, he said.

To a query, Pandey said the book comprises short stories and there is no sort of controversy involved as no has been named in it.

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