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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Babies for sale: Scam exposed in Andhra

A midwife in Karimnagar district converted the job of helping deliver babies into a roaring business opportunity by simply selling newborn babies to childless couples.

The price paid for these babies sold soon after birth to childless couples in Karimnagar district of Andhra Pradesh ranged from Rs 5000 to Rs 1.5 lakh.

The racket was exposed after a young mother lodged a police complaint after she was told her baby was born dead.

''He agreed to pay Rs 20,000 for this baby but paid only Rs 5,000, saying he would pay only after checking the baby is okay,'' said Sameena, Midwife.

The midwife says the biological mothers gave up the babies because they were born out of illegitimate relationships.

''In the last one and a half years, she had sold six other babies. She lured vulnerable mothers. She took Rs 80,000, Re 1 lakh, Rs 1.5 lakh from childless couples and made money,'' said T Laxminarsaiah, DSP, Jagtial.

Six baby boys and one baby girl traded in a similar manner were traced within a 50-km radius and brought to the police station along with the couples who bought them.

''How can I now give up the baby? In fact I borrowed money to bring this baby boy home. He is now our life,'' said a local.

''She said if you give money, you can get a baby. So I gave money and got him home,'' said another.

''I can't give her up. How can I continue to live after that?'' said yet another local.

The children are now in the temporary custody of a voluntary organisation in Karimnagar.

The authorities say the parents have been asked to seek legal adoption of their wards.

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