Slavery claim at India Mission to the U.N.

July 2, 2010 3:23:45 PM PDT
A woman claims she was kept as a slave at the Indian Mission to the United Nations.

Behind the massive golden doors of the Indian Mission to the United Nations, beneath its flag waving in the summer breeze is a story so sordid and shameful, that slavery may be the only word to describe it.

Neena Molhotra was the press spokesperson for the Indian Mission to the U.N.

A lawsuit filed in U.S. Federal Court alleges that Mrs. Molhotra and her husband held a woman, who was just 17 years old when she was brought to the United States, as a slave in an apartment in the mission.

The complaint says Shanti Gurung was held as a virtual prisoner in the mission.

It alleges that the couple confiscated her passport and forced her to work 16 hour days, seven days a week and subjected her to severe psychological abuse.

The suit says Ms. Gurung was forced to give daily massages to Mrs. Molhotra, forced to sleep on the floor of the apartment, even though there were empty bedrooms available, and was often refused food, and denied money.