During my first visit to Kolkata (India), I passed the "red light district" in Sonagachi, which is located in North-Kolkata near the intersection of Chittaranjan Avenue Sova Bazar and Beadon Street, just north of the Marble Palace.


The red light district is an area with hundreds of brothels and around 10,000 sex workers. The character of red light areas of different cities of the world is almost the same. However, the character of Sonagachhi is a little bit different. Red-light areas of Kolkata are also divided into four different classes: "poor class"; "lower class"; "middle class"; and "rich class". 

People who are not involved with the prostitution business who have not been able to move out of the area due to financial or other reasons are not disturbed by customers or these activities in general.

In general, non-governmental organizations seek to help "sex workers" providing them all the social and health support. I had the opportunity to visit some "clinics" where monthly medical consultations are appointed for sex workers, as well as schools where the sex workers' children are educated in order to try to find better alternatives.

Also, several non-governmental organizations and government organizations operate for the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases (STD) including AIDS. For example, the "Sonagachi Project" is a prostitute's cooperative that operates in the area and empowers sex workers to insist on condom use; a relatively low percentage of prostitutes in this district (5.17% of the 13,000 prostitutes in Sonagachi) are estimated to be HIV positive. However, these efforts are hindered by human trafficking: refusal of clients to wear a condom and women controlled by third parties are forced to oblige.

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prostitution_in_Kolkata

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