Police on Monday arrested three men from Harnamadi area for their alleged involvement in negotiating the sale of four girls aged between 11 and 18.
One of the suspects, Lal Bahadur Bishwokarma, is the father of two of the girls. Bishwokarma had agreed to sell his daughters for Rs 50,000.
Padam Waiba and his brother Sitaram Waiba had given the money to Bishwokarma for the girls saying that the duo would be taken to Kathmandu to work in a carpet factory.
According to Deputy Superintendent of Police Deepak Thapa, the traffickers were nabbed with the help of the information provided by a local female youth group called Kishori Samuha. On Monday morning, the police had rounded up the three men from a Toyota car while they were ready to head for Kathmandu.
Meanwhile, Bishwokarma has pleaded innocence before the police. He said that he was too poor to look after his family and was happy to get Rs 50,000 “in advance” for the job his daughters would do in the capital. Similarly, Waiba brothers have told the police that they were indeed taking the girls to Kathmandu to get them job in a carpet factory.
“The father was told that the girls would get Rs 5,000 per month. But the deal attracts legal actions under human trafficking,” said Thapa.
While the girls, now kept at a shelter home run by a child organization CIWIN, are undergoing counseling, the locals have said that Bishwokarma is a simple person and would not have sold his daughters had he suspected anything wrong.
“Such young girls were being taken to Kathmandu without their full knowledge. Money exchanged hands for the girls. We will investigate the case seriously,” said DSP Thapa