Twenty years ago, Sunita Duanwar suffered five months of unimaginable cruelty at the hands of sex slave traders who made her sleep with up to 30 men a day.
She was just 14 and lured to India on the promise of regular work, but instead was locked in a small room with a barred window, beaten by her ‘customers’ and even woken up so her new ‘owners’ could force her to have sex.
She was one of the lucky ones who managed to escape, and has dedicated her life to trying to save other young girls from the same fate, tricked by the same promises.
But in the wake of Nepal’s earthquake, the problem has become even more acute as sex traffickers prey on desperate families left with nothing after the natural disaster destroyed vast swathes of the country.
Sunita was just as desperate as many of these young women when she was sold into the sex industry by callous slave traders in Mumbai.
While most children of her age are at school, she was kept locked in a room,and forced to work as a child prostitute.
‘During those five months I was forced to serve up to 30 customers a day seven days a week and 50 costumers a day at public holidays and celebrations, and some of them would beat me,’ she told MailOnline.
‘Even when I tried to sleep they would wake me up if a customer wanted sex.
‘I was not allowed to go out of the house or leave the room which had bars in front of the windows and I was guarded all the time.
‘Even the local policemen were bribed to turn the blind eye to what happened to me and to the other girls in that house.’
Sunita was lucky: a Buddhist monk became aware of her plight, and rescued her from her prison, eventually helping her cross the border back to Nepal, and her family.
Now 36, she is as determined as ever to save girls from the traders, running Shakti Samuha, a charity whose staff mostly consists of women who also have been trafficked and rescued from Indian brothels.
Nepal has long been a hunting ground for people smugglers, looking for people to sell into modern day slavery.