A childless couple’s desire to adopt a male child without going through the legal process led to the kidnapping and sale of a two-year-old son of a homeless couple for ₹30,000 in Odisha’s Berhampur.
Six persons were arrested on Monday in connection with the theft and sale of the child, who was rescued and handed over to his parents on Sunday night.
The arrested persons included the childless couple, Brundaban Rana (52) and his wife Baijayanti; Prafulla Nayak and his wife Mamata, who prepared a false adoption document claiming they were the parents of the kidnapped child; Santosh Rana, the brother-in-law of Brundaban, and another man named Siba Nayak.
The parents of the child are from the Gajapati district. They, along with their four-year-old daughter and two year-old-son, had reached Berhampur a few weeks ago to make and sell idols made of plaster of paris and clay. At night they used to sleep under an overbridge in the Gosaninagaon police station area. On September 19 night their son was kidnapped, following which they complained to the police the next day.
Police Inspector Sunit Soren said Brundaban, a bank attendant, had asked Santosh to arrange a child for adoption. Santosh contacted his friend Prafulla, who , with the help of Siba, stole the son of the homeless couple. Santosh paid ₹30,000 to Prafulla for the stolen child. “Later Prafulla and his wife prepared a false legal agreement in which they claimed they were handing over their child to Brundaban for adoption by consent,” said Mr. Soren.
However, some locals had seen Siba moving around with the child on September 20. On September 22, Siba was arrested and his interrogation revealed the whole racket.