The mother of four was determined to find her 16-year-old girl.
In an incredible story of bravery and resilience, one mom went above and beyond to save her daughter. Their names have been changed to keep their identities safe. According to VICE News, the Bangladeshi mother, Asiya, willingly trafficked herself into India so that she could rescue her 16-year-old daughter Marium. The teen had been kidnapped as part of a cross-border trafficking ring. The mother began her journey from her home in a slum outside Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka to the neighboring country. “I did it not just for my eldest daughter. It was for many others, too,” she said. When she was returning with her daughter she was questioned by Indian border officials. The 34-year-old's story stunned them. Bangladesh's special security force, the Rapid Action Battalion, ended up arresting three men—Mohammad Kalu, 40, Mohammad Shohag, 32, and Billal Hossain, 41—whom they accused of having trafficked women and children for over a decade.
Woman tricks traffickers in daring bid to rescue daughter https://t.co/MM9KRiYpIv— DhakaTribune (@DhakaTribune) August 17, 2021
It all started when the 16-year-old received a job offer from a family acquaintance. “I thought the job would be good for me. So, when he came and said, ‘Let’s go,’ I packed up and went with him,” Marium said. Things took a dark turn when was handed over to two men who took her to the border. “It was the middle of the night, and I started crying,” she said. “But they pushed me into a boat.” She managed to make a quick call to her mother. I’m being taken to India! Save me!” she told Asiya before her phone was taken. Marium had named one of her traffickers during the call, which ended up later saving her life.
When her 16 year-old daughter disappeared, she decided to take the matter into her own hands. https://t.co/irokphsh3k— VICE (@VICE) September 19, 2021
Asiya tried to get help from the police but heard nothing for over 40 days. She contacted the man her daughter had named over the phone and asked him for a job. He said a position was available in India. She took her savings of $703 and left. “I hid the money under a wig and covered my head with a scarf,” she said. She reached a brothel in New Delhi. “But my daughter wasn’t there,” she said. “I came to know that all girls were not taken to the same place.”
And then... Quick-thinking Marium called her father through a client’s cellphone and shared her location. The father gave this information to his wife. She was 800 miles away. Asiya left the brothel and with the help of the client some locals, the mother and daughter were finally reunited in New Delhi. “On the night of June 18, I got my daughter back,” said Asiya. “The brothel owner confessed that he bought my daughter for $3,404 from Bangladesh.” The three men who have been arrested are believed to be part of a bigger network of traffickers. There are 25 other perpetrators in the ring where each victim was sold for $1,173 to $1,760. Not every victim has been lucky enough to come back home. And though the mother and daughter have been reunited the ordeal has left its mark. “We still live with anxiety and trauma,” Asiya said. But hopefully, her story of bravery will put an end to any more young girls from her slum being taken away.