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HindustanTimes Thu,18 Dec 2014

UP: 'Sold' 11-year-old suffers monthlong sex slavery

Rohit K Singh, Hindustan Times  Lucknow, August 26, 2013
First Published: 09:29 IST(26/8/2013) | Last Updated: 11:07 IST(26/8/2013)

The 11-year-old lives in a constant nightmare.

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She is unable to come out of the trauma that she faced in a month-long captivity of two men.

She was tortured and sexually exploited after her stepfather sold her off to these men for Rs. 25,000.

Ten weeks after being freed from her buyers’ clutches by two passers-by, the ordeal she went through still haunts her.

She wakes up in the dead of the night recalling the days of her captivity.

This little girl, from an under-privileged family was released when the two men were forcibly taking her away on a motorcycle in Singhai area of Lakhimpur Kheri, nearly 130 kilometres northwest of the state capital, on June 1.

Two locals Nishant Gupta and his friend Abhishek Pancholi rescued her after spotting her struggling to free herself.

The two men fled the spot when the two rescuers started to question them about the girl.

The rescuers immediately took the girl to the local police station and got an FIR registered against the two men, identified as Sattelal and Govardhan, as well as the girl’s stepfather Sunder under Child Marriage Act.

Detailed police probe revealed that the girl’s stepfather, who works as a labourer, got her ‘married’ to Sattelal, who is in his mid 30s, after the latter gave him Rs. 25,000 in return.

Sattelal and Govardan, who were allegedly linked to a women trafficking racket, sexually exploited the girl for a month and planned to sell her again to some other people.

The police later handed over the girl to her mother with the instruction to keep her safely.

Since then, the girl’s mother is helping her to come out of the trauma.

The biggest worry for the girl’s mother is that the offender-her husband-- still lives inside her home.

Nishant Gupta, one of the two rescuers, said, “The practice of child marriages is prevalent in some areas of Lakhmipur Kheri and most of these girls fall prey to traffickers. A major woman trafficking racket can be unearthed if the cops pursue child marriage cases properly. It is a serious issue and the authorities should take necessary action to curb this malpractice in the area.”


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