Red-light district is where I was born, surrounded by the flesh trade all my life.
At 12, I’ve been asked for my “rate” and cried myself to sleep because I didn’t understand. But you want to know what’s worse? It’s that the men who came to ask would all be from the “upper class” as you call it with shiny cars and the perception that they could “buy” anything. But the women there are my family… They’ve taken care of me when my mother would have to go work at a factory nearby and treated with me so much love and kindness, but I still grew up with a very low self-esteem because of my dark colour. I don’t know why you have to be fair to be beautiful… And because I’m dark I’ve always been called ugly. Once my 12th standard ended, I decided to make a change. I told the people at my municipal school that I wanted to study, learn English and make something of myself. That’s when I went to an organisation called Kranti.