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  • The Delhi High Court has ruled that, while a sex worker has the same rights as any other citizen, she cannot expect special treatment if she breaks the law.
  • The Court made the remark while denying interim bail to a sex worker who allegedly forced a minor girl into prostitution and refused to let her leave the brothel house. 
  • According to the prosecution, the petitioner was discovered in a brothel house, from which 13 minor girls were rescued. Following the rescue operations, a FIR was filed under sections 363, 366A, 368, 370, 370A, 372, 376, and 34 of the IPC, as well as sections 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 of the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act.
  • The petitioner requested a week's interim bail because her mother needed urgent knee replacement surgery. 
  • The State had objected to the grant of interim bail, claiming that the prosecutrix had yet to be examined and that granting bail would jeopardise the trial. It was also stated that the petitioner, who is a sex worker, would continue to engage in the same activity if released. 
  • The complainant claimed that if the petitioner is released on interim bail, she will try to influence the prosecutrix because only one of the 13 minors rescued had the courage to come forward. It was also stated that, given the nature of the case, granting interim bail would only impede the trial process.
  • The petitioner denied the allegations, claiming that she was not responsible for the trafficking of minors because no allegations were made against her of preventing the minors from fleeing. 
  • It was also claimed that, with the exception of one prosecutrix, all of the others had denied being trafficked and had told police that they were in the brothel of their own free will. Observing that the brothel owner "Mala Lama," also known as "Punjabi Didi" and "Nani," was arrested only on July 11, 2021 from Mumbai after much concerted effort, the Court concluded that the petitioner's chances of evading the law were very high.
  • The Court thus dismissed the plea, stating that serious allegations had been made against the petitioner and that the prosecutrix had yet to be examined by the Trial Court.
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