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Woman arrested for selling daughter to pay off village council fine
From: BBC          Published On: January 25, 2013, 18:21 GMT
 
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A mother has been arrested in India after allegedly selling her 11-year-old daughter to pay off a fine.

The woman is thought to have sold her daughter for 650,000 rupees - or 7,611 - to settle the fine imposed on her by the council in her home village in the northwestern state of Rajasthan.

Police also arrested a couple accused of buying the young girl.

The mother told police she sold her child to pay a fine of 450,000 rupees - or 5,317 - imposed by the council as a penalty for violating a local tradition.

The sale, which took place around a month ago, came to light when the woman's daughter tried to run away from the couple that allegedly bought her from her mother, police in Rajasthan told BBC News.

The man and woman chased the girl, who managed to get to a restaurant where customers alerted the police.

The young girl told officers she had been beaten by the couple, and claimed they had planned to sell her on to somebody in Mumbai.

Rakesh Verma, head of the anti-trafficking unit in Tonk district, Rajasthan, said: 'We arrested the mother of the girl and the two buyers, Tarachand Jat and Santra Devi.

'The girl has been handed over to a shelter and she is safe now,' he added.
Police said the girl's mother was fined by her village council for backing out of a marriage agreement involving her daughter.

She had allegedly married off her daughter to a man under a local custom that sees the groom pay the mother for the bride.

It is thought the woman later broke the agreement and took her daughter home.

Thousands of children in India fall into the hands of slave traders every year - many sold by their desperate, poverty-stricken parents.


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