11-month-old son sold by drunk father for Rs 25,000, buys alcohol, mobile phone, clothes with money
We have heard stories about people selling their kidneys to buy expensive iPhones and iPads. However, in a shocking incident, a man hailing from Odisha’s Bhadrak district in India on Tuesday sold his 11-month-old son to purchase a mobile phone in exchange for the money he received.
The accused, Balaram Mukhi sold his son for Rs 25,000, and out of that sum, he spent Rs 2,000 on the mobile phone, Rs 1,500 on a silver anklet for his seven year-old daughter and bought one saree for his wife, Sukuti Mukhi. The remaining money was used by Balaram to buy alcohol for his session of debauchery.
Anup Sahoo, Bhadrak’s Superintendent of Police (SSP) said Mukhi has no regular income. “He works as a sweeper and seems to be a habitual drinker,” said SSP Sahoo.
The mother of the child, Sukuti said, “My husband was in a drunken condition, and he told people that this is an illegitimate child, which is why he didn’t want to keep him with me and wants to give him to some other person.”
According to the mother, she tried to object to the ‘sale’ and told the father that she is already raising her two children and can raise the third one as well. However, the accused father claims that both he and his wife were inebriated and had a fight and beat each other up. In the middle of the fight, he picked up the child and went to sell him off.
Sukuti was also interrogated by the police to know her involvement in the crime. According to the police, the couple also have another 10-year-old son. The police are also questioning Balia, Balaram’s brother-in-law and an anganwadi worker, who are also suspects in the case.
According to the police, Balaram, Balia and an anganwadi worker met a couple in their sixties, Somnath Sethi, a retired driver with the state government and his wife. The couple had lost their only 24-year-old son in 2012. Following the incident, Sethi’s wife slipped into depression with no friends or relatives to take care of her.
The three decided to use this opportunity to make money from them by selling the infant. The anganwadi worker who knew the Sethi couple contacted Mukhi after which a deal was struck between them.
“Sethi’s wife had been suffering from depression after their only son died and he had told his acquaintances to look for a child they could adopt so that his wife recovers,” said Manoj Rout, inspector-in-charge of Bhadrak town police station.
The couple too would be interrogated in the case, said Inspector Rout.