New Delhi - In GB Road, the Indian capital's notorious red light area, the madams are surprised and pleased to see a large number of Nepali men visiting their brothels. They are the diaspora who fled the Maoist insurgency and went to India and now they seek a little bit of comfort with sex workers, some of who are Nepali girls, after a hard day's work. "A lot of Nepali men come here for pleasure," says Rita, a sex worker from Dang. "Their numbers are now increasing." 'Bhabhi', a brothel owner, says she is very happy to see so many new clients. Today, Nepali men outnumber the Indians who come to this locality. "It's quite easy to get money from Nepalis who spend up to Rs 500 for one girl," says Bhabhi who has four girls working for her.
Chabilal Nepali from Dang, works as a cook in brothel number 4. He says he can tell the volume of Nepali immigrants has risen simply from the increasing amount of those who come to GB Road. "Both young and old Nepalis can be seen making rounds ," says Nepali who hates the sight of the girls fighting to grab customers. "I'm forced to live here as I have no other choice."
It's the same predicament that forced another young man from Dang to leave home. "It wasn't safe for me to stay, so I had to leave my family," he says. "We have problems finding decent jobs because Indian employers look at us with suspicion." He has been here four months and works as a day labourer. With no extra money for a room, he is forced to sleep under a bridge near the railway station.
While it's sad to see Nepalis throwing away their hard-earned money on sex workers, it is worse to see them being exploited by the police who regularly collect 'protection' money for keeping them out of prison if they have been caught going to a brothel. They are beaten if they refuse to pay.