The Cabinet on Wednesday approved the Trafficking of Persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation) Bill, 2018. It will be introduced in Parliament in the second half of the Budget Session, which starts on March 5.

With this law, the government said it aims to “make India a leader among South Asian countries to combat trafficking” by addressing the problem “from the point of view of prevention, rescue and rehabilitation”.

The bill proposes creating a rehabilitation fund for the victims, designating courts in every district for quick, time-bound trials as well as protecting those rescued from traffickers at the earliest. It also proposes rigorous imprisonment of 10 years and a fine of no less than Rs 1 lakh for the guilty.

“A National Anti-Trafficking Bureau will perform the functions of international coordination with authorities in foreign countries and international organisations,” the bill says.