Sangareddy: Notwithstanding the efforts of the state administration and non-governmental organisations, sale of infants continues to flourish in the state. In the latest incident, a 10-month-old tribal baby boy was allegedly sold by his mother to an issueless couple in Medak district a few weeks ago. The incident came to light on Tuesday when the boy’s mother returned to reclaim him from the foster parents, leading to a tussle. The boy was sent to Shishu Vihar, government home for destitute children.
K Yashoda of Sadasivapalle village in Koudipalle mandal has two sons and 10-month-old Stephen is the younger of the two. About 20 days ago, she allegedly sold the boy to Venkataiah and Kanakamma of Yelamakanne village in the same mandal for Rs 30,000 in the presence of village heads. It is learnt that the couple made an agreement with Yashoda that if she ever wanted to have her son back, she has to pay Rs 1.5 lakh, for which Yashoda agreed.
For reasons unknown, Yashoda visited the couple a few days ago demanding that her son be returned to her, which the couple refused. As a result, both the mothers exchanged a heated words and the issue went to the notice of the women and child welfare officials. The officials took custody of the boy and shifted him to the Shishu Vihar.
Speaking to Express, Venkataiah, married for 15 years, said he did not have children and decided to adopt a child through the Shishu Vihar as per law. “Recently, we approached the officials and also paid the prescribed fee of Rs 1,500 for the purpose. Then, Yashoda contacted us requesting that we adopt her son,” he said. Venkataiah asserted that he did not ‘purchase’ the boy secretly, but adopted him in the presence of village elders. “We gave the money by selling gold ornaments in a bid to help Yashoda who claimed that she wanted monitory support to raise her another son,” he said.
When contacted, women and child welfare project officer Kanakadurga said a decision on the issue will taken after consulting the higher authorities and the baby will continue to be in the care of the department till then.