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5 trafficked minors rescued

The girls are aged between 14 and 17 years
Representational image.
Representational image.
File photo

Debraj Mitra   |   Calcutta   |   Published 23.09.22, 02:50 AM

Five girls from Bengal, who should have been in school at their age, were rescued on Wednesday from the clutches of an alleged trafficker in Patna where they were forced to dance at soirees and sexually exploited.

The girls are aged between 14 and 17 years. One woman, Puja Nandi, has been arrested. Last week, a member of a Delhi-based NGO, Mission Mukti Foundation, received a call from one of the girls who said she was being kept confined in a house in Patna. The call triggered a chain of events that led to the rescue of the girls on Wednesday. The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights sent a letter to the senior superintendent of police, Patna, requesting an order to the anti-human trafficking unit of the Patna police to facilitate the rescue operation. 

A team comprising cops in civvies, members of two NGOs (Mission Mukti and Rescue Foundation), and members of the Patna units of Child Welfare Commission (CWC) and Childline India Foundation raided a house in Patna’s Maharani Colony on Wednesday, only to find it locked. 

The team started asking the residents about the people who lived in the house. One of them shared the mobile phone number of one of the residents of the house. 

An activist dialled the number and a woman answered the call. The caller impersonated an event organiser in need of dancers. The woman asked for an advance payment in the online mode. When the caller insisted on seeing the girls first, she disconnected the call. 

Tracing the number to a location around 2km away, the team reached another neighbourhood. “But there were many houses in the area. So, we took the guise of civic officials on an inspection of tenants in the neighbourhood. We barged in to find the girls inside,” said Virender Singh of Mission Mukti Foundation.



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