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13-year-old sold by grandpa

Malda, Aug. 3: A 13-year-old girl was married off to a 60-year-old man yesterday, allegedly after her grandfather struck a deal for Rs 20,000.

Police are looking for the girl, her grandfather Shantiram Majumdar, and Rajbal Yadav, the groom, who fled soon after the marriage was solemnised in Pannapur near Parbatidanga village, 72km from here.

The girl and her two younger sisters stayed with their grandfather in Parbatidanga because their parents, Yugal Biswas and Renu, work as day labourers in Delhi. According to residents of the village, Shantiram had sold off his eldest granddaughter yesterday to Yadav, a resident of Nainital, for Rs 20, 000. They also said Yadav paid another Rs 80,000 to the other persons involved in the deal.

Leader of a local mahila samiti, Manju Sharma, said: “We came to know that a girl was getting married. But we were stunned to see a 60-year-old man as the groom. We protested and a quarrel started with Shantiram.” Later, the samiti members informed the police. By the time the cops arrived, Yadav and Shantiram had fled.

Malda police chief Bhuban Mondal said they were in touch with their counterparts in Nainital and a team might be sent there to look for the girl.

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