Hyderabad: A four-month-old baby girl, who was sold to a couple in Visakhapatnam, was rescued by the Madannapet police here on Monday. Three persons, including the child’s father, were arrested, while two women who were part of the deal, are absconding.
According to police, the child, Fathima, was born to Shaik Yousuf, 27, an auto driver from Hassan Nagar, and his wife Sabila Begum in July at the Government Maternity Hospital at Petlaburj. However, with the couple already having five children decided to give the newborn for adoption and readily agreed when they were approached by a woman, Shaik Khatoon, an agent from Dabeerpura. Khatoon took the child from them and agreed to pay them Rs 2 lakh later.
They later came to know that Khatoon had given the child to a couple in Visakhapatnam after making a deal of Rs 2 lakh, and that the couple had named the child Hasini. Khatoon, they learned, had sold the child through V Gangadhar Reddy and Sirisha, both agents operating around city hospitals to settle such illegal deals. Yousuf then got in touch with Reddy and got the number of the Vizag couple, Nageswara Rao and Parvathi.
“Yousuf spoke to them, and asked for Rs 2 lakh, which they had agreed to pay Gangadhar after the legal adoption procedures were done. They sent him Rs 1.7 lakh via Gangadhar, who however, paid Yousuf only Rs 85,000 through Khatoon. When he did not get the promised sum, Yousuf made his wife approach the police and lodge a complaint,” police said. During investigation, police found that Gangadhar Reddy, a resident of Qutbullapur, was a broker who made deals with women who want to conceive through IVF procedure or surrogacy and women who were ready to rent their uterus.
He targeted people visiting the Sai Kiran and Oasis Hospital at Banjara Hills and also mediated illegal adoptions. He, along with Khatoon and Sirisha, agents at various city hospitals, and Ratna Kumari, an agent from Rama infertility Centre, Visakhapatnam, had formed a gang. “Reddy and Sirisha had introduced themselves as the biological parents of Fathima while handing her over to Parvathi and Nageswar Rao. They had said they already had five kids and one more would be a burden economically,” police said, adding that it was also found that Yousuf had threatened his wife of divorce to make her hand over the child to Khatoon.
Police have arrested Yousuf, Gangadhar Reddy and Khatoon. Efforts are on to trace Sirisha and Ratna Kumari alias Geetha, who are absconding.