Mumbai: Five held, one on the run for pushing teen into flesh trade

Mumbai: Mankhurd Police have arrested five people and are on the lookout for a man for allegedly forcing a minor into wedlock, raping her after the illegal marriage and later selling the teen in the sex trade market.

Police said the complainant approached them, after which they swung into action, making five arrests. According to police sources, the complainant, a teen, was married off with Rahul Budhawale on April 22 last year without her consent while she was a minor.

After the wedding festivities, Rahul consummated the marriage and raped the teen repeatedly, while physically assaulting her. When the problems persisted, the teen returned to her maiden home, where her mother sold her to Asha Khandagale and pushed her into prostitution.

Police said, Asha then sent the teen to an unidentified Chembur-based man presumed to be in his mid-50s, where he raped the teen and paid her in cash.

After the act, the teen was given shelter at Asha's residence, where the latter's husband, Akash, inappropriately touched the teen and raped her and had unnatural sex.

The teen then ran off to her maiden home, where her brother threatened to kill her with a sword if she refused to sleep with him, following which he raped her. When the teen could not take it, she approached police and registered a case against all the accused.

Mankhurd police have arrested Rahul, Asha, Akash, the teen's mother and brother. Meanwhile, a search for the man who raped her is underway.

All the accused have been booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) act, along with Prevention of Immoral Trafficking Act.

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