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Odisha child sale: Grandmother of kids says alcoholic father sold them for booze

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Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, July 17:

The grandmother of the three childrenwho were sold by their parents in Odisha’s capital city today said the father, Shyam Chandra Rao, is an alcoholic and he did this only to earn enough money to take care of his daily booze.

The elderly woman told media persons here that Shyam is a habitual boozer and spends almost every penny he earns on alcohol.

Shyam Chandra Rao : Sold sons for booze ?
Shyam Chandra Rao : Sold sons for booze ?

Earlier in the day, the Khordha district collector Niranjan Sahu, who along with Child Welfare Committee (CWC) members and BMC officials, visited the residence of the labourer couple in the Press Colony slum area in the city, said the parents’ explanantion that they had sold the children in order to secure a better life for them is unconvincing and that there are ‘other reasons’ behind the case.

The truth will be revealed  after the investigation is completed, he said.

Meanwhile the Kharvela Nagar police, who are also investigating the case, have rescued Rao’s two-year son from one Prakash Panda’s house at Mirzapur (Pipili) in Puri district.

Meanwhile police have handed over the 22-day-old baby son, who was sold for Rs 6000 to one Ranjit Choudhuri and his wife Chandini of Samastipur area in Bihar recently, to the CWC after detaining the couple in the police station.

The police have also detained the accused Shyam Chandra Rao, his wife Pramila Rao for further interrogation.

It may be mentioned here that the matter came to light after Rulina Patra, Counselor of Ruchika Childline Bhubaneswar Wednesday lodged a complaint with the Kharvela Nagar Police station here requesting to take necessary steps to rescue all the three children allegedly sold by their parents for money.

Ms Patra in her complaint said Shyama Chandra Rao and his wife Pramila, both daily wagers, who stay in the Press Colony slum in the city, are the biological parents of seven children. Two of them are dead and three (all sons) have been sold to different persons in the past to earn money.

Their first son was sold to a person who lives in Kolkata and the second was sold to a person who lives in Odisha, Ms Patra added.
The complaint report was lodged following an order from the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) Khordha.

“We have requested the police to rescue all three children soon and produce them before Child Welfare Committee (CWC) for suitable order and to take necessary legal action against the couple for the criminal act of selling their children,” Ms Patra said.

The couple, poor daily labourers, however said they sold their sons not for money but in order to ensure their children’s live long and lead a happy life.