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Jalpaiguri child trafficking: Centre’s complaint helped bust racket

Sources in CID said Bimala Sishu Griho has been operating for over 10 years. “In the last two to three years, it has sold 17 babies...,” said an official.

Written by SWEETY KUMARI | Kolkata |
February 21, 2017 5:34:08 am

The raids in Jalpaiguri, which exposed the suspected international child racket, happened after the CID received a complaint from the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA), a statutory body under the Union Ministry of Women and Child Development, about “irregularities” prevailing at the homes in January. Investigation into three homes — Bimala Sishu Griho, Ashroy Short Stay Home and North Bengal People’s Development Committee — in Jalpaiguri led to the arrest of the prime suspect in the case Chandana Chakraborty (55) and Sonali Mondal (30). They reportedly sold babies to countries like France, US, Singapore and Spain. Both have been sent to 13-day police custody.

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Chakraborty, the owner of the three homes, is the headmistress of a primary school in Maynaguri. She was detained last Saturday. A day after, she, along with her chief adoption officer Sonali Mondal, were arrested. During their interrogation, the name of Juhi Chowdhury had come up, leading the CID to lodge a suo motu case against the BJP leader under Section 370 clause 5 (trafficking of persons by abuse of power) of the IPC.

Sources in CID said Bimala Sishu Griho has been operating for over 10 years. “In the last two to three years, it has sold 17 babies…,” said an official.

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“Our team had been monitoring the movements of the accused for one week. Chandana Chakraborty had a sticker pasted on her four-wheeler, which said ‘on government duty’… She is only a primary teacher… Her phone was tapped and evidence collected.. Only then the raids were conducted,” the official added.

The incident comes around a month after CID filed a chargesheet, naming 19 people, in the Baduria newborn trafficking case. “In the previous case, dumped newborns were mainly trafficked with the help of doctors and NGOs. In this case, pregnant women were given shelter at these three homes. After they delivered, clients used to buy the children,” said an official.

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