iconimg Monday, March 30, 2015

Jatin Anand, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, July 14, 2011
A school dropout from Uttar Pradesh’s Azamgarh who gave up studies after Class VIII, 27-year-old Nagma Khan had settled with her parents in the Middle East before she came to the Capital five years ago. After getting into prostitution of her own will following a failed marriage to a city-based builder in 2004, Khan was arrested twice earlier. However, she got the biggest jolt of her life when her mentor, Sonu Punjaban, was arrested in early April this year.

“She was one of Punjaban’s girls and got scared when her mentor was slapped with MCOCA, and put behind bars for good. Khan ran away to Pune and started her own prostitution racket there. When she came back to Delhi, Punjaban got wind of Khan’s business through her cousins, Sanjay and Vijay, whom Khan had approached to help with clients,” said a senior police officer.

It was then that her incensed mentor tipped the police off about Khan’s expanding network.

Meanwhile, Punjaban’s cousins helped Khan recruit willing girls settled in various parts of the Capital and in desperate need of a job. The Bhatia brothers, sources claimed, either used their extensive base of ground-level informers or select the girls when they just walked-in to be recruited.

“The girls were ‘rated’ based upon set parameters. Of the four girls whom we apprehended after raiding her flat in the Chhatarpur Enclave area on Tuesday night, three are from western UP and one from Mumbai. Each girl used to get between Rs. 40,000 and Rs. 50,000 per week,” the officer said.

Police said the gang used to cater to a select clientele and operate mainly on the telephone, evident from the call details of 8 mobile phones recovered from their hideout in Chhatarpur.