Newborn baby rescued from being sold

[ Karyir Riba ]

ROING, 5 Mar: Roing-based Special Adoption Agency (SAA) and Childline Roing, with the help of the police on Thursday rescued from Shantipur area in nearby Assam a newborn baby who was being illegally traded off outside Arunachal.

The 6-year-old older brother of the baby was also rescued in the process.

Nani Maria Society (NMS) chairperson Desai Linggi informed that at around 6:30 pm on Thursday, she received a call from a reliable source that a newborn baby boy was being sold by the parents in Balek village.

“I was told that a labourer couple who work at a tea estate in Balek were selling their newborn baby to another couple, and that the baby would be taken out of Arunachal after the deal was done,” she informed.

Linggi called Lower Dibang Valley SP JK Lego for assistance, and also coordinated with Childline Roing. The SP immediately deployed OC Lod Tari and team under SI Tashing Haging to accompany the SAA and Childline members to rescue the baby.

“When our team reached Balek, we learnt that the baby had already been taken to Shantipur in Assam. While speaking with the parents, we learnt that they had a 6-year-old boy. This child was also being kept in another person’s house because the parents said they couldn’t afford his education or take care of him. The child was instantly rescued from there. Then, at around 11 pm, our team finally rescued the sold off baby from Shantipur. Both the children have been handed over to our Child Care Institute (CCI). Their medical checkup suggested that both are in good health,” informed Linggi.

She expressed concern over the lack of information about legal adoption procedures in Arunachal. “Our women and child development department should be more empowered. There should be more awareness camps, especially for such daily wage labourers.

They should not only be made aware about legal adoption but should also be educated about birth control. This is a very serious matter and should be taken up by our government at the earliest, so that such situations do not arise,” she said.

The couple who had paid money in exchange for the baby sought help from the SAA for legally adopting the baby. They said that they were not aware of such an agency and now want to adopt the baby legally. Linggi said that she guided the couple and advised them to first register themselves as potential adopters, which is the first step in the legal adoption procedure.

“The Child Welfare Committee will decide what will happen to the rescued children on 25 March,” informed Linggi.

Until then, they will remain under her care at the CCI.

Meanwhile, a suo moto case has been registered against the parents of the baby, and the father has been taken into custody by the police.

“If any foul play is found against the couple who ‘bought’ the baby during investigation, they will be summoned, too,” said the OC.