They Too Deserve Respect
Mumbai is a city that never sleeps. Shruti, a woman in her early thirties, worked as a professor in a college. She loved this city that she could never imagine herself adjusting to in any other part of the world. Along with teaching, she was involved in some social service activities.
It was a Wednesday afternoon. After taking lectures for more than 3 hours, she needed a break. There was a quaint café near her college. As she entered, a cute waiter greeted her with a smile. She returned the smile and took a corner table that had a plush sofa.
For a Wednesday afternoon, the cafe was sparsely populated. Few men dressed in suits were having their meeting. A couple was engrossed in each other.
Shruti loved reading people. The door opened, and two young girls in garish clothes entered the cafe. They were bursting with energy. One look at them, and you could tell who they were. They were prostitutes.
The men in suits raised their eyebrows. Shruti observed their body language. The girls were oblivious to what people thought about them.
They chose the table close to the window. The waiter handed over a menu card. Both of them were loud and the men were leering at these girls. Instantly Shruti got up from her table and joined the girls' table.
She asked them, "Kya main aap ko join kar sakti hoon?"The girls were baffled, but they immediately agreed.
Shruti began conversing with the two girls. They introduced themselves as Sakina and Samina. Shruti could hear the men gossiping about these girls.
"Perverts," she muttered to herself.
Both of them worked in Kamathipura. It was Samina's birthday. So, Sakina had concocted a story that Samina was ill. She was taking her to a doctor. The brothel owner was reluctant but sent the two girls as customers demanded healthy girls.
Shruti ordered a cake for Samina. The latter was excited like a kid who was given a new toy. The smile on Samina's face gave immense happiness to Shruti.
Sakina and Samina told Shruti that they were sold by their maternal uncle. Their horrific story of rape and abuse made Shruti wince. These young girls dreamed of having a family and kids. They craved a normal life. They desired friends. Life was unfair to them.
They told Shruti that they entertained 4 to 5 customers every day. They even said that sometimes the act was painful, but they had to control themselves. These girls needed money.