Five persons including a doctor from a private nursing home in Dharavi have been booked for allegedly trying to sell a two-month old baby girl, police said on Thursday.
API G J Jaid of Central Police station in Ulhasnagar told that the matter came to light yesterday when activists of NGO ‘Sangharsh’ received a tip off that a child was about to be sold in Joshi Nursing Home at Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum.
The activists rushed to the hospital and took charge of the infant and subsequently lodged a complaint.
Subsequently, offences were registered against mother Sunit Lahuri, three other accused Ratna Ubale, Sunanda Raju More, Babita Hivre and a doctor from the nursing home, whose identity has been kept in wraps.
All the five have been charged under Section 370 rw 34 of the IPC, the police officer said.
“Also, the amount for which the baby girl was being sold is still unclear as investigations are underway,” Jaid said.
Santosh Bhimrao Kharat of Sangharsh, who saved the child from being sold alleged that this child racket was going in the hospital for long.
According to him, the modus operandi was that agents (women in the guise of hospital attendants) identify pregnant women and strike a deal with them.
In the sixth month (of pregnancy) itself it is decided that if the child is a female they would get Rs 50,000 and if its a male they would get Rs 1,00,000, said Kharat.
In this case, the parents of the child were already paid Rs 12,000 in advance, he claimed.
The girl’s father works in a sweet meat factory manufacturing biscuits in Ulhasnagar.
Kharat also said that the mother of the child was admitted without any records in the hospital at Dharavi since last nine days to facilitate the deal and delivery of the child.
The three women who have been booked served as agents, who frequented the hospital to gather information about the pregnant women and probable sellers.
Another woman, who posed as a social worker also visited the hospital frequently and clicked pictures of new born babies and posted it on mobile network apps for probable customers before finalising the deal, he said.
The rescued baby has now been sent to a child care centre in Bhiwandi, police said.
No arrests have been made so far in the case.