Saint charity shocked after India babies 'sold'

Mother Teresa was a missionary nun who became a global symbol of compassion

Mother Teresa was a missionary nun who became a global symbol of compassion

The Missionaries of Charity was founded in 1950 by Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, known as "Mother Teresa" and canonized posthumously in 2016.

She said they also wrote to the sub-divisional officer (SDO) for shifting 70 mentally and physically challenged inmates from Nirmal Hriday.

"If this was a lucrative trade, there is reason to believe other centres operated by MoC or other shelter homes also may be indulging in such activities", senior police officer RK Mallick told NDTV.

The baby in question was born May 1 to a shelter resident and was apparently given to the couple two weeks later.

Meanwhile, the Missionaries of Charity headquarters in Kolkata today issued a statement, saying it would take necessary action to find out the truth. Twelve pregnant women who were living at the Missionaries of Charity's Ranchi shelter have been transferred to a government-run shelter, according to the AP.

Saurabh Kumar Agarwal and wife Priti claimed they had paid Rs 1.20 lakh to Nirmal Hriday on May 1 after which they were handed over a baby boy on May 14.

On July 3, Saurav and Preeti Agrawal from UP's Sonebhadra district approached the CWC with a complaint that Indwar, who allegedly sold them a newborn boy in May, had taken back the child on the pretext of completing court formalities and had returned him.

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A police official told BBC Hindi's Niraj Sinha that they have found other babies that allegedly have been illegally sold from the center.

The pair were initially charged with human trafficking - punishable by up to five years in prison - but police said they could face more charges as investigations widen.

The boy is now in the custody of Child Welfare Committee.

The Missionaries of Charity have not responded to calls for comment. It is against our moral convictions. "We suspect illegal adoption was going on here too", said Verma.

A Missionaries of Charity spokeswoman quoted by the Associated Press said the order had stopped giving children up for adoption three years ago and had never taken money from parents. We are carefully looking into the matter. We followed this up with the institution again.

According to Mission of Charities spokesperson, Sunita Kumar, the organization did not approve of any adoptions that took place out of the home.

Meanwhile, an FIR has been lodged against the Missionaries of Charity for being involved in human trafficking by the CWC.

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