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Meanwhile, when it comes to children traced or recovered in 2017, West Bengal has the highest success. In the year 2017, 3,055 missing children from West Bengal were traced, which accounts for 14.7% of all children traced (20,713) throughout the country.

“While the efforts of the State in tracing missing children is commendable, we have to look at the cases of human trafficking in accordance with the data of missing children. Looking only at the data of the NCRB on human trafficking may not give a clear picture,” said Rishi Kant of Shakti Vahini, an organisation working against human trafficking.

The NCRB report records a significant drop in the number of cases of human trafficking. According to the report, 2,857 cases of human trafficking were recorded in the country in 2017. West Bengal recorded 357 cases, the second highest number after Jharkhand, which registered 373 cases.

“There is an overall reduction of human trafficking cases by 67% in the country. There is also a significant increase in the conviction of perpetrators, which could be a deterrence factor in the reduction of the crime,” said Saji Philip, Director of Operations, International Justice Mission, Kolkata. The number of convictions increased to 249 in 2017 compared with 159 in 2016.

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