HYDERABAD: What poverty can do to one is unthinkable. One such story has emerged from Telangana's capital Hyderabad. Amid the coronavirus-induced lockdown which has driven millions to poverty, a migrant couple in Hyderabad tried to sell their two-month-old baby boy for Rs 22,000 on Sunday through a broker.
Madan Kumar Singh (32), and Saritha (30) from Uttar Pradesh had come to Hyderabad a few years ago and worked as construction labourers.
Madan Singh is an alcohol addict and they stayed at Bathukamma Banda near Jagadgirigutta, a leading daily reported. The couple had two sons, the first one is seven-year-old and the second one just two months old.
Jeedimetla police arrested the couple and another woman identified as Seshu, who was brokering the deal, was also taken into custody.
The child has been rescued and is kept at Sishu Vihar being run by the Women and Child Welfare Department authorities, police said.
P V Padmaja Reddy, Deputy Commissioner of Police of Balanagar told the daily that investigation revealed that the family was going through severe financial strain. She said that police is investigating as to whether there were any other reasons for the sale of the child.
The couple was worried whether they could raise the child due to acute poverty, police said.
However, the child’s mother, however, told the police that her husband was also an alcohol addict and always forced her for money to buy alcohol.
“The couple managed to find a broker Seshu, who reportedly found a childless couple who agreed to buy the child for Rs 22,000. On receiving a tip off, we caught Seshu who was taking the child for a medical examination,” police was quoted saying.
Andhra Pradesh Balala Hakkula Sangham president P Achyuta Rao said it is the responsibility of the state government to come to the rescue of daily wage workers who were suffering from poverty due to COVID-19 lockdown. “The department of women and child welfare should launch an awareness campaign about the Cradle Scheme among the poor people who were resorting to selling of new-born babies,” he said to the daily.