Mumbai: Sex workers accepting old notes, but business moves to parking lots

Updated: Nov 16, 2016, 11:23 IST | Samiullah Khan |

While the entire nation is battling a cash crunch over the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes, business is flourishing for commercial sex workers in Marve in Mumbai

The commercial sex workers in Malad said that as guesthouse owners have stopped accepting the high-value notes, they take customers to parking areas and other isolated spots
The commercial sex workers in Malad said that as guesthouse owners have stopped accepting the high-value notes, they take customers to parking areas and other isolated spots

While the nation is battling a cash crunch over the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes, business is flourishing for commercial sex workers in Marve. Only hitch is that customers are paying up with old notes for their services.

While hoteliers, shopkeepers and other establishments have reportedly been doing less business since the demonetisation move, commercial sex workers have been doing brisk business, but that’s because for lack of a better option than accepting the banned notes.

Also Read: Demonetisation: Mumbai's vendors have no change to return for Rs 2000

Some of them in Malad (West), walking on Marve road near the beach, said they were still taking the now defunct Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes from customers.

Family matters
“The demonetisation move has affected us equally, with less people coming to us. And those who came said they would only pay in Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes. It’s been a big problem, but we have to earn for our families. That’s why I have been accepting the banned notes,” said a 24-year-old commercial sex worker.

Another said that when she asked customers coming with Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes to give change, they outright refused to.

“I had to take the money to run my house. There are a few rationing shops accepting these notes, but on the condition that I buy for the full amount, and in case the total falls short, then I won’t get the change back,” she added.

Read Story: Demonetisation: Chaos outside banks, ATMs across India for third day

They also said that guesthouse owners too have stopped accepting the high-value notes, and hence, they have no option now but to take customers to parking areas near Marve or other desolate spots.

Putting her foot down
One commercial sex worker, however, said, “I am avoiding taking the banned notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000. It’s too much of a hassle to get them exchanged. Instead I demand payment in change and I am happy that most of the customers have been obliging.”

When asked whether any one of the sex workers had yet got the new Rs 2,000 note, all of them replied in the negative.

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