New York University
PhD, Sociocultural Anthropology, 2017

The University of Chicago
MA in the Social Sciences (MAPSS), 2006-07

Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi, India
MA in Sociology, 2003-05

Lady Shri Ram College, University of Delhi, India
BA (Honors) in Journalism, 2000-03


Law and society, Global gender and sexuality, South Asia, human rights and humanitarianism, NGOs, state practices, sex work and sex trafficking, labor migration and labor trafficking.

As an anthropologist of law, gender and sexuality, and South Asia, my research spans postcolonial law, state practices, critical approaches to human rights, humanitarianism, development, and NGOs, institutional responses to sex trafficking and labor trafficking, global legal developments around gender and sexuality, and intersections between gender, labor, childhood, and migration.

I was delighted to speak on Anthropology TV about my research at the 2013 AAA meetings in Chicago. The video is available at


Saving the Slaving Child: Domestic Work, Labor Trafficking, and the Politics of Rescue in India (forthcoming in Humanity journal).

Co-authored with Sally E. Merry, The Limits of Consent: Trafficking and the Problem of International Paternalism, in Michael Barnett, ed. (2017). Paternalism Beyond Borders. Cambridge University Press.


Co-authored with Kimberly Walters, “A Recipe for Injustice: India’s New Trafficking Bill Expands a Troubled Rescue, Rehabilitation, and Repatriation Framework,” Open Democracy, July 30, 2018.

“Critical Reflections on Raid and Rescue Operations in New Delhi,” Open Democracy, November 25, 2017.

My piece “Rescued but not Released: the “protective custody” of sex workers in India” was published along with several excellent pieces focusing on the gendered aspects of anti-trafficking and anti-slavery discourses at the Open Democracy blog:

My contribution to the Field Notes section for Cultural
Anthropology explored the theme of Illegality through the lens of Translation, using different fieldwork moments amidst anti-trafficking interventions in India: