South Asians for Human Rights

Promoting Democracy, Upholding Human Rights

Published in The Hindu on Sep. 12 ::

Poet Nisar Ahmed was surrounded by a group of people in Mysore as he was stepping out of a programme venue on Thursday, who demanded an explanation from him on a statement made by him earlier on sex workers.

He told The Hindu that he was “dismayed” by how a statement pleading for the human rights of sex workers had been “grossly misinterpreted” by various people.

“I had said that sex workers need protection from the State because they are part and parcel of society. They are legitimate and voting citizens and have their rights. They are exploited by a range of people — from police to the customers — and live in the most abysmal conditions. Society cannot use them and then disown them taking a moral position,” said Prof. Ahmed. They need housing, medical aid and other facilities, he said.

He wondered why this humanist position was seen as problematic by a section of people.