Kolkata, Aug 5 (IANS) The Kolkata Police have reportedly busted an illegal child selling racket in the city involving around 100 surrogate mothers and a network of hundreds of agents and sub-agents.
Mamata Patra, one of the principal brains behind this racket, has been taken into police custody.
The police have also been able to identify the involvement of a popular in Vitro Fertilization (IVF) centre in the racket.
Raid and search operations have already been conducted at the said IVF centre located at Anandapur in the southern outskirts of Kolkata.
The cops came to know about this racket while probing a case where a mother, Rupali Mondal, was arrested on August 1 for attempting to sell her child to another woman, Kalyani Guha. Both Modal and Guha were taken to custody by the cops of the city police.
“Later as our sleuths went deep into the integration they identified the major racket behind it. Once any couple unable to bear a child in a normal process contacted the IVF center, its staff used to contact Mamata Patra, who promised the couple a child after a reasonable period of time.
In the meantime, Patra through her agent network would contact any woman coming from a financially backward section with a proposal for purchasing their womb at an amount ranging from Rs 40,000 to Rs 50,000.
After the baby was born, it was handed over to the couple at an amount ranging from Rs 4,00,000 to Rs 4,50,000,” confirmed an official of the city police on strict condition of anonymity.
He said that recently Patra even rented her womb and earned a hefty amount by selling the newborn out of it. “In her case also the IVF center under scanner was the venue of surrogacy. We are now trying to track that particular newborn,” the city police official said.
Involvement of some IVF specialists in the matter is not being ruled out.
Earlier on July 23, a couple Jaideb Chowdhury (father) and Sathi Chowdhury (mother) were arrested by the cops of Khardah Police station in North 24 Parganas district of the state for selling their own child to get money to purchase alcohol. Kanai Chowdhury, the grandfather of the child was also arrested.