Hyderabad Police on Wednesday arrested five Omani, three Qatari nationals and three Muslim priests on charges of human trafficking and child marriage. The arrests were made after a probe into rising number of such cases in the old city area.
Charges under IPC Sections 420 (cheating and dishonesty), 370 (human trafficking and exploitation), rape and POCSO Act (Protection Of Children From Sexual Offences Act) have been filed against them, said a News18 report quoting Hyderabad police commissioner M Mahendar Reddy.
In all, 20 people have been arrested while the police have identified 35 brokers, mostly women, who helped in sending young brides to Gulf countries on forged nikahnamas and marriage certificates, according to News18.
Police conducted a raid based on the tip-off given by a victim who was interviewed by a sheikh for marriage. She had rejected him on the basis of age. When she refused, she was pressurised, following which she informed the police.
"There are people as part of an organised network who identify unmarried victim girls. They are promised a bright future (and) then duped," M Mahendar Reddy added.
He added that sheikhs who come to India for marriage spend lavishly on the brokers.
The police plan to organise a conference where the victims will share their experiences and offer details about the racket. The Department of Minority Welfare, Waqf Board and other local religious leaders are also going to be a part of this conference.
Deputy Commissioner of Police, V Satyanarayana told News18 that most of these girls came from poor backgrounds and that sheikh spent anywhere between Rs 3-10 lakh to arrange to take them to the Gulf nations.
In August, Hyderabad police also arrested a 77-year-old Omani sheikh for buying a bride for a sum of Rs 5 lakh. During the probe, police found the nexus between the brokers, sheikhs and Muslim priests.
In an advisory, police had mentioned that foreigners are required to bring an NOC from their country and submit an application to the commissioner of police if they wished to marry a girl in Hyderabad, the News18 report said.
Further, the police have also asked for the gap between the wife and husband to not be more than 10 years.
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Updated Date: Sep 20, 2017 17:36:05 IST