Mumbai: The Kurar police have busted a child trafficking operation in Mumbai that stretched to Nashik and Hyderabad. In the operation, six traffickers have been arrested from Malvani, Govandi and Nashik. Irfan Khan, 26, Salauddin Syyad, 23, Aadil Khan, 19, and Taufir Sayyad, 26, were held from Malvani on September 27, Raza Shaikh, 25, was held from Govandi a day later, and Samadhan Jag-tap, 35, was arrested from Nashik on October 1.
On September 26, a two-year-old girl sleeping alongside her parents under the bridge on a footpath in Malad East was abducted at 3pm by four unidentified persons. Her parents, who sell toys to make ends meet, immediately filed a case.
Massive search operation by police
The police launched an extensive search operation, forming nine teams and a sketch of the girl was circulated. At that time, a man handed over a young girl to the Dadar railway police, claiming she was lost. The police suspected the man’s involvement and subsequent examination of CCTV footage led them to Nashik.
During primary investigation, it was revealed that the man had taken the child to Nashik, where they learned about an agent Samadhan Jagtap, known for facilitating the sale of young children. The girl was to be sold for ₹2 lakh. However, when they sent the child’s photo to the buyer, he refused the deal.
Smita Patil, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Zone 12, said, “After the failed deal, the accused returned to Mumbai with the child and handed her over to the Dadar railway police. It was the same child who had been abducted from the footpath. When the police showed the child to her parents, they immediately recognised her.”
Accused frequently engaged in child trafficking
Jagtap from Nashik frequently travelled to Hyderabad to engage in child trafficking deals. He had connections with hospital staff and nursing centres in Hyderabad and would persuade parents who did not wish to keep their newborns to part with them in exchange for substantial sums. When the hospital staff couldn’t meet the high demand, agents like Jagtap activated their sources and asked them to steal babies from the streets to fulfil their illicit business demands.
The court granted all six accused judicial custody. This operation was executed by police inspector Santosh Gadade and his team, under the guidance of DCP Smita Patil and senior police inspector Satish Gaghave.