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48 rescued minors, 4 women sent to Assam

Sources in the administration said all were rescued from different places of Bengal as they had fled their homes or had been trafficked
The group departed for their home state a day after chief minister Mamata Banerjee met her Assam counterpart Himanta Biswa Sarma at Raj Bhavan in Darjeeling.
The group departed for their home state a day after chief minister Mamata Banerjee met her Assam counterpart Himanta Biswa Sarma at Raj Bhavan in Darjeeling.
File photo

Our Correspondent   |   Jalpaiguri   |   Published 15.07.22, 01:40 AM

The Mamata Banerjee government on Thursday sent home 48 minors and four adults from Assam who had been staying at government and private homes after being rescued from various locations of Bengal.

The group departed for their home state a day after chief minister Mamata Banerjee met her Assam counterpart Himanta Biswa Sarma at Raj Bhavan in Darjeeling. After the meeting, Mamata had said that being neighbours, it was necessary to have a cordial ties with the state government of Assam.

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“In all, 52 persons were sent back to Assam by train. They will be received by the chief welfare committee members at Kamakhya station and in due course be handed over to their families,” said Moumita Godara Basu, district magistrate of Jalpaiguri.

Four women are aged 18 years or above and 48 are minors of whom 37 are boys and 11 are girls. 

 Sources in the administration said all were rescued from different places of Bengal as they had fled their homes or had been trafficked.

Eventually, they were sent to government and private shelters in Jalpaiguri, Cooch Behar, Alipurduar, Darjeeling, Birbhum and Howrah.

Sudip Bhadra, the district child protection officer of Jalpaiguri, said owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, they could not send children to their home state for two years.

Recently, the child rights and trafficking task force of the state contacted the Assam government about their going home. “As the Assam government assented, a coach in the Guwahati-bound Northeast Express was reserved for them. Today (Thursday), they boarded the train, along with our employees and police personnel. They will be handed over at Kamakhya station,” said Bhadra.

In recent times, this is the only initiative when so many children have been sent back to their home state at one go.

Tejaswi Rana, an additional district magistrate, was present at the station to monitor the travel.

“We have provided food, water, sanitisers and masks to all. We hope they will reunite with their families in due course,” said Rana.



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