MP: 12-yr-old girl sold for Rs 40,000 in Bhopal; 5 arrested

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Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh) [India] : Five people have been arrested for abetting child marriage and human trafficking in Madhya Pradesh’s capital Bhopal, police said.

The arrests were made after women and child welfare department officials prevented the marriage of a 12-year-old tribal girl with a 27-year-old man on June 27 in a village under Gunaga police station limits near Bhopal, police said on Wednesday. According to police, the girl’s parents had sold the girl for Rs 40,000 and received an advance of Rs 20,000, with the remaining amount to be handed over to them after the wedding.

Superintendent of Police (SP, Bhopal rural), Kiranlata Kerketta said, “We received information from the Women and Child Development Department about a child marriage in Gunaga police station area on Monday (June 26) following which we reached the spot and saw that the ‘haldi’ ceremony was taking place. On inquiry it was found the girl was 12 years old and the person whom she was getting married to was 27 years old.”

The minor told police that her parents had fixed her marriage for Rs 40,000 and they had dimissed her protests, SP Kerketta said. The officer added that a case was registered against five persons so far, including the parents of the minor girl, the bridegroom and his parents under the Human Trafficking, Juvenile Justice Act, Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, SC/ST Act. All these accused have been arrested, police said.

Further investigation into the matter is underway, the police official said adding that cases would be lodged against those who worked as brokers or were if they were found to be involved in the case.

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