At the height of unemployment, a man sold off his 11 month old child and bought new mobile phone, jewelry, and clothes. Balaram Mukhi, a resident of Bhadrak district in Odisha was arrested for allegedly selling his 11-month-old son for Rs 25,000.
After he received the money, he spent Rs 2,000 for buying a mobile phone, Rs 1,500 on a silver anklet for his 7-year-old daughter, a saree for his wife and the rest of it on alcohol.
Bhadrak’s Superintendent of Police (SSP) Anup Sahoo said Mukhi has no regular income and that he is a “habitual drinker”. Apart from Mukhi’s involvement, police have also identified his brother-in-law Balia and an anganwadi worker who may have assisted in the selling of the child.
It is reported that the three men stumbled upon the idea of selling the baby when they met a couple in their sixties. Somnath Sethi, a retired government bus driver and his wife struck a deal with Mukhi via the anganwadi worker, as the man’s wife was suffering from depression after the couple lost their 24-year-old son in 2012.
“Sethi’s wife had been suffering from depression after their only son died and he had told his acquaintances to look for a child they could adopt so that his wife recovers,” said Inspector-in-charge of the Bhadrak Town Police Station, Manoj Rout.
The mother of the child, Barsha Mukhi, said, “My husband was in a drunken condition and told that this is an illegitimate child and hence, doesn’t want to keep him with me and wants to give him to some other person.”
She said that she objected to it and said that she was already taking responsibility of two other children and would have maintained the third one as well.”He beat me up and I also beat him up, but he forcibly sold the child for Rs. 25,000, and purchased mobile, saree, dress, silver Anklet etc,” she said.