Tamanna, who as a child followed an older girl into a truck and crossed the border of Bhutan to India, is sold to the Nats, a community that was forced to prostitute its women for a living. Sucked into the flesh trade, Tamanna eventually manages to make her escape, but has to leave her little daughter Rupa behind. From now on, the only thing on Tamanna’s mind is to wrest Rupa from the clutches of Jabbar Aslam, the kingpin of the trade. She enlists the help of Eila, an organisation that fights sex-trafficking, headed by Rukmini. Tamanna’s resolve encourages other women to rally round her in spite of the ever-present violence and the bonds of blood and family loyalty that are almost impossible to break. Prem Nagar: Town of Love is a searing indictment of a practice that turns human beings into chattels.
This book, then, is not ’fiction’, if by fiction one means a flight from reality: on the contrary, it is an unflinching look at reality, a reality that cries out for change. Above all, this book gives a counsel of hope, not despair: the modest school established by Eila and the Nat women of Forbesganj, despite widespread opposition, is more than a symbol of this hope. Continue Reading.