Mallamma Maadar (Mala)

AGE: 29 YEARS

Mala was born into a Devadasi community in Sindhgi village, Bijapur, Karnataka. These communities are known for giving girls for temple prostitution. Mala’s parents used to work as farmers. Mala has three sisters and two brothers. Mala used to love playing on the swing in her childhood.Mala never been to a school because of their poor financial condition. It was a tradition for Devadasi community peopleto surrender the girl child to Devadasi temple by their family.

Mala was one of the minors in the temple who was brought to the temple at the age of 6/7 years as she could remember. These children were sexually exploited at the temple for many years by the priests and many different men who came to the temple. All these children were kept in caves near the temple which was situated in the interior area of a jungle. There were more than hundred children with Mala in the cave she mentioned. Mala said the priest used to shave all these children’s head to make them look ugly and not allowing the children to go anywhere. Many poor children had to face these brutalities in that cave near the temple. Mala stayed in the cave for more than 4 years and then she was rescued in a raid by the police. Mala was sent to a home by the police but she ran away from there and went back to her family in village.

Once Mala’s neighbour asked Mala if she wants to work in city for which she will be paid well. Mala said yes to this neighbour and came with her to Pune’s Budhvarpeth red light area during this time Mala was 11 years old. While she was 19 year old there was a raid by police in the red-light area and again Mala was rescued. Mala got a chance to go back to her village again. Mala’s family got her married to a man in the village and she has a girl child from that man. But because of poor family condition Mala left her husband by tellinglie to her husband that she is going to get the certificate of her school education. One of the neighbours asked her to come to Turbhe in Mumbai where she will get a good job. Mala was again sold by her neighbour in Turbhe red light area and could not go back to her village.Mala was sold many times into multiple different brothels in Mumbai. Mala was eventually rescued by YouCanFreeUs in 2018 from Turbhe, red-light area, Navi Mumbai.

Mala is doing basic literacy course and Life skill training at YouCanFreeUs. Mala dreams to become a beautician. She also is good at embroidery and thread work. She is part of the in-house tailoring course at YCFU. Currently she is doing her one year apprenticeship at “The Chanakya School of Hand Embroidery and Fine Crafts” After getting a good job she wants to support the family financially to keep them happy. At YouCAnFreeUs, Mala is experiencing freedom and love that never she could imagine. Mala feels that she could be herself as unique as possible, and do what she would like to do. She doesn’t feel forced by anyone for anything as her past experiences. She has high regards on rescuing her and for all goodness that she could experience here.