ADVERTISEMENT

Fertility Racket: Probe Into Tamil Nadu Illegal Embryo Sale Reaches Kerala, AP

Investigation revealed that the minor girl was raped several times in the last five years by her mother's partner.

Published
Fertility Racket: Probe Into Tamil Nadu Illegal Embryo Sale Reaches Kerala, AP
i

The probe into a fertility racket, where a 16-year-old in Tamil Nadu’s Erode was forced to sell her ovarian eggs, has now extended to Kerala and Tamil Nadu, The Quint has gathered. The sale of oocytes were forced by the minor's mother and step-father.

A senior investigation officer probing the case said that apart from several places in Tamil Nadu, the minor’s family had traveled to Kerala and Andhra Pradesh to sell her oocytes. The probe will now extend to these states, the officer said.

“We recorded the minor girl’s statement in front of the magistrate. The family had crossed the border and taken her to Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala and Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh and sold oocytes,” P Vijaya, Inspector of Police, Erode South told The Quint. Vijaya also said that the minor was taken to various hospitals and clinics in Hosur, Trichy, Erode, Salem, and other districts in Tamil Nadu to allegedly donate her oocytes.

ADVERTISEMENT

Two Parallel Investigations Ongoing in the Case

Three persons, including the minor girl’s mother, S Indirani alias Sumiya. the mother’s paramour, A Syed Ali and a female intermediary, K Malathi were arrested in Erode on Friday, 3 June. The accused were booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) read with relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.

25-year-old Surampatti John, who aided in procuring a new Aadhaar card with a different name for the girl, is also in judicial custody. John had also got the girl's year of birth changed to 1995.

The key accused in the case – S Indirani alias Sumiya. the mother’s paramour, A Syed Ali and a female intermediary, K Malathi.

(Photo: The Quint)

Dr J Radhakrishnan, Principal Secretary (Heath) explained that there are two cases that are being investigated simultaneously.

“Police investigation is looking into how the minor was sexually exploited by the mother’s partner. Meanwhile, we have deputed a team to visit all the hospitals and clinics mentioned in her complaint and they will submit a report soon,” he said.

In response to the question on whether this case has opened up a interstate racket, Radhakrishnan said, “We have been told that she was taken to two other states for this illegal trade. We will follow up with the new hospitals and districts mentioned by the minor. We are taking her statement in all seriousness.“

Investigation has revealed that the girl was raped several times in the last five years. Indirani was a regular ovarian egg donor who allegedly dragged her daughter into the racket, a police official said.

The medical examination of the minor girl has been completed and they are awaiting the cervical report to ascertain further course of action, a senior official told The Quint.

Licenses of Erring Hospitals Will be Cancelled

A team led by GS Gomathi, joint director of Health Services, Erode, visited a few private hospitals and inspected records, verified the hospital register, case-sheets and dates of admission of patients, and discharge records. She also held inquiries with the doctors and staff.

A senior official also told The Quint, “In our investigation, we will review if these hospitals have done due diligence and checked the documents necessary. We are also looking at how young girls are being exploited.”

A Viswanathan, joint director of Medical and Rural Health Services told journalists that cancellation of licenses would be taken against hospitals found guilty of the illegal extraction of oocytes. Doctors, if they were complicit in the crime, will also face action, he added.

Every hospital should adhere to the guidelines of the Assisted Reproductive Technology (Regulation) Bill while taking donations of embryo for surrogacy, he added.

The Bill passed in Loksabha in 2020 specifies that only females between 23 and 35 years of age can donate oocytes for surrogacy. A donor should be a married woman having at least one living child of her own and can donate oocytes only once in her life, and not more than seven oocytes can be retrieved from her. But the 16-year-old complainant was allegedly subjected to the process eight times.

ADVERTISEMENT

Background

The incident came to light when the girl escaped from captivity and lodged a police complaint with the help of relatives.

The 16-year-old girl in her complaint to the Erode South Police stated that she was living with her mother and her paramour A Syed Ali, since the age of three. Ali had sexually assaulted her since she attained puberty at the age of 12, in the presence of her mother, she alleged.

Her mother along with her friend 36-year-old K Malathi sold her oocyte at private hospitals and fertility clinics. For every transaction, her mother and Syed Ali received Rs 20,000 while Malathi received Rs 5,000 from the hospitals, she alleged. The minor was reportedly threatened by her mother and partner to not reveal it to anyone.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

Speaking truth to power requires allies like you.
Become a Quint Insider
25
100
200

or more

PREMIUM

3 months
12 months
12 months
Check Insider Benefits
ADVERTISEMENT
Stay Updated

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.

Join over 120,000 subscribers!
ADVERTISEMENT
×
×