Nepal

   

On the day I arrived in Kathmandu they were crowning the Kumari, or Child-Goddess. Chosen by holy men and revered, she is advisor to the King and people pay for her blessing. But her reign only lasts until she sheds blood, either from a cut or at puberty. Then she is cast aside. Former Kumaris rarely marry since legend says that their husbands will die young. Some become prostitutes. Elsewhere in Nepal most children live in utter poverty. From young ages they work in factories, brickworks, and markets. Many are sold by impoverished parents in to bonded labour and some are smuggled to the brothels of Bombay and Calcutta.