Video Volunteers: In Bihar’s Arwal young boys are being kidnapped and forced into slavery

Between 2015 and 2016, six boys aged between 8 and 16 years went missing in Karpi block of Arwal district in Bihar. Two of them returned after managing to escape their captors. They have harrowing tales to recount. “These men hit me on my face and I fell unconscious. When I woke up I was in a different place. They told me it was Ludhiana,” recalls Manoj Kumar*. He as made to chop wood from nine in the morning till six every evening. “There were eight of us. The other boys were from Sultanpur, Aurangabad, Agra,Jharkhand. Twenty men guarded us. They would beat us if we didn’t chop wood and not give us food. There was no payment at all. They killed four boys. And threw them in the river nearby.” Chilling as his story is, Manoj’s impassive recounting of the horrific ordeal reveals how normalised such violence had been in his life as a slave. Zafar Iqbal reports from Arwal, Bihar for Video Volunteers.

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