In the Sundarbans, a delta region between India and Bangladesh, poverty, proximity to the border and vulnerability to cyclones and coastal erosion have for years converged to create a human trafficking hotspot.
The region is almost entirely agricultural, and when land is flooded it can remain saline and infertile for up to five years, plunging families without a safety net into poverty. People are often forced to leave their communities to look for work after a natural disaster, but for women this can leave them vulnerable to exploitation.
The twin crises of climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic are adding to the mix, causing activists to that thousands of women and girls in the region may be at increased risk of human trafficking.
Featured in The Telegraph